St. Bonaventure vs. Davidson Odds
|St. Bonaventure Odds||+1.5|
|Time | TV||Wednesday, 5 p.m. ET | ESPN+|
|Odds as of Tuesday night and via PointsBet.|
St. Bonaventure and Davidson collide on Wednesday evening for a key A-10 matchup. It will be the second contest in four days between the two teams. The Bonnies took home the first game on Sunday in Olean, winning 69-58.
The Bonnies (11-3, 9-3 A-10) have a lot to play for, as they’re in a tight competition for the regular season A-10 title. They’re also squarely on the NCAA tournament bubble, and a win on the road here would add a quality NET Quad 2 win to their resume.
Davidson (11-6, 6-3 A-10) is competing for a top-four seed and double bye in next week’s A-10 tournament. With a NET ranking of 78 and no Quad 1 victories, the Wildcats’ at-large hopes are all but gone. However, they are good enough to win a wide-open conference tournament and earning that coveted double bye will be a huge boost to their chances.
Takeaways from Sunday’s game
Both teams got off to a slow start in Sunday’s game. Early turnovers and foul trouble plagued the Bonnies in the first 8-10 minutes, but Davidson was unable to advantage with a poor shooting start.
The quality of play picked up late in the half when Davidson started to find its stroke from the outside and the Bonnies cut down on turnovers and started scoring at the rim. St. Bonaventure went to the locker room with a 28-26 lead.
Both offenses looked much sharper in the second half. Davidson came out firing from 3, but the Bonnies started answering with some triples of their own. St. Bonaventure was also much more aggressive attacking the basket all night. They outscored Davidson, 41-32, in the second half, and eventually pulled away late for the 11-point victory.
One of my biggest takeaways from the game was how badly the Bonnies dominated the paint on both ends of the floor. Below are a few key stats that demonstrate their dominance:
- Rebounds: St. Bonaventure 45, Davidson 29
- Points in the paint: St. Bonaventure 24, Davidson 16
- Second-Chance Points: St. Bonaventure 12, Davidson 7
- Free Throw Attempts: St. Bonaventure 9, Davidson 6
The Wildcats simply lacked aggressiveness on offense and settled for way too many outside shots. They made 13 3-pointers, but attempted 37 while only taking 16 shots from inside the arc.
Sophomore forward Hyunjung Lee had a big game, canning a career-high six 3s for 18 points on the day. Kellan Grady had a strong night, as well, scoring 18 on an efficient 7-of-12 shooting. These two didn’t get much help, however, as the rest of Davidson’s starters combined for just 8 points, all of which came from Luka Brajkovic. Guard Carter Collins, who averages over 12 points per game, was a complete non-factor.
The Bonnies boast a much more balanced attack than the Wildcats, and that was on full display on Sunday. Jaren Holmes and Kyle Lofton led with 19 and 18 points, respectively. They also got 9 points from Dom Welch, and 8 apiece from Jalen Adaway and Osun Osunniyi.
The Bonnies benefited from a great shooting day, hitting 11-of-21 from beyond the arc (52.4%). Holmes, Lofton and Welch were a combined 11-of-17 from 3. The Bonnies typically don’t shoot it that well, averaging just 5.6 made 3-pointers per game on 33.9% from beyond the arc as a team.
Keys to Winning the Rematch
For Davidson to win this game, it has to be much more aggressive offensively and find a way to get Collins involved. The Bonnies are an excellent defensive team (54th in adjusted defensive efficiency), and you’re not going to beat them by jacking up nearly 40 3-point attempts. If they can get some more buckets at the rim and put pressure on the Bonnies’ interior defense, the offense will open up and they will start getting cleaner looks from 3.
The Wildcats also have to be tougher on the defensive end and take care of business on the glass. Rebounding is usually a strength for Davidson, as it has a strong +6.8 margin per game on the glass this season. Outside of Osunniyi, the Bonnies aren’t very tell, yet they’re still a strong rebounding team. Many of their guards are excellent rebounders, as Holmes (5.9 per game), Welch (6.2), and Adaway (6.5) do their part to make up for the lack of team size.
The Bonnies don’t need to make a ton of adjustments to win Round 2. They just have to stay aggressive, but make sure to avoid foul trouble.
The Bonnies lean on their starters as much as any team in the country, with each averaging 32 minutes or more per game. Foul trouble and/or injuries played a major factor in each of their three losses, so it’s vitally important that they keep their starters on the floor. The Bonnies only committed 12 fouls on Sunday, and outside of Osunniyi picking up two early ones and sitting for a large portion of the first half, foul trouble wasn’t much of a factor.
Betting Analysis & Pick
Seeing how much more aggressive and physical the Bonnies were in all aspects of the game on Sunday, it’s tough to pick against them in Round 2.
Both teams have slow and efficient offenses, but the Bonnies have a significant edge defensively. They might have a tougher time getting shots to fall on the road, but they can always bank on a strong defensive performance.
Another reason to like the Bonnies is their balance on offense. Opposing defenses can’t focus on just one or two guys, as all five starters average double figures. Four different players have led the team in scoring in their last five games.
Davidson has struggled against tough opponents all season. Rhode Island (99) is the only team in the top 100 of the NET rankings that they’ve beaten, and they’re 0-4 versus teams ranked ahead of them. I expect this trend to continue on Wednesday night against the Bonnies.
Pick: St. Bonaventure +1.5 | Play down to -1.