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OVC Ball Statbox

1st 2nd Final
Eastern Kentucky 40 48 88
14-12 (5-6 OVC)
Belmont 32 46 78
17-8 (9-2 OVC)

Team Statistics

EKU BELM
31/57 (54.4%) Field Goals 27/65 (41.5%)
10/22 (45.5%) 3-Point FG 14/42 (33.3%)
16/23 (69.6%) Free Throws 10/12 (83.3%)
34 (7/27) Rebounds (O/D) 34 (12/22)
7 2nd Chance Pts 14
14 Assists 16
16 Turnovers 16
17 Points off TO 15
38 Pts in the Paint 26
2 Fastbreak Pts 0
27 Bench Pts 32

Tempo Tracker (Possessions)

Four Factors

Learn more in our tempo-free stats primer

Eastern Kentucky offense

Belmont offense

What happened: I didn’t even entirely believe this stat — so I looked it up. EKU just handed Belmont their first ever OVC home loss. It’s Belmont’s fourth year in the league!

Whatever mojo the Colonels had offensively in November and December, and that they lost in January, seems to be back. The Colonels hit 54% from the field, 10-22 from three-point range, and as teams have done often against the Bruins this year — got to the free-throw line.

The Bruins are making a bad habit of taking a lot of three’s…and losing. The Bruins took 42 three-point attempts in Saturday’s loss (14-42, 33.3%) and 45 attempts against Tennessee Tech (17-45, 37.8%)

 

Eastern Kentucky Colonels EKU LogoWhat it means: Two straight wins have moved EKU out of last place in the East, and into an OVC Tournament spot. (For now.) With head-to-head wins over Austin Peay and Jacksonville State, the Colonels have what is effectively a two-game lead over both for that final spot.

A single-bye, though, is probably too far out of reach. The Colonels are three games back of Tennessee State in the loss column, with five to play. EKU plays TSU once over those five games.

In the bigger picture, are the Colonels peaking at the right time? They were able to maintain this level of shooting earlier this season for about six weeks, before a drop-off. (Although much of that was against low-level Division I teams.) Winning four straight in Nashville is probably a stretch, but the Colonels are showing they aren’t to be taken lightly as we enter the season’s stretch run.

Player of the night: Javontae Hawkins scored a game-high 24 points, but he did need 18 field goal attempts to get there. His rebounding was a nice boost as well, pulling down three of EKU’s seven offensive boards.

What’s next: On a two-game win streak, the Colonels travel to take on the team that last beat them, Morehead State.

 

Belmont Bruins LogoWhat it means: That bad things happen when Belmont takes too many threes.

…no, really. This isn’t a new thing. Remember their loss at EIU last year? 45 three point attempts. Doesn’t matter how open they are — Belmont’s probably not hitting 20 three’s in a game. History tells us this. More three point attempts does not equal wins.

It also makes the East, and the OVC regular season “title” as a whole, a lot more interesting. Now, Tennessee State would like a word again for the division crown, just one game back of the Bruins and Golden Eagles in the loss column. A lot to play for down the stretch for the Bruins.

Player of the night: Craig Bradshaw led in points, Evan Bradds led in rebounds, but we’re always talking about those two. So instead I’m going to point out that Taylor Barnette had four assists and zero turnovers, and that somehow Kevin McClain fouled out in 15 minutes on the floor.

What’s next: Belmont’s final two games of the season? Hosting Tennessee Tech, and playing at Tennessee Stat. They get Jacksonville State next, though, before making the dreaded ‘Death Valley’ road swing — albeit on a Saturday and then Thursday night. Normally, those two games in a row are a two-night, one-trip kind of deal.


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  1. Ryan Gill:
    Kudos to the Colonels. They came in to Curb Arena and outplayed the Bruins for every second of 40 minutes. Belmont was soft, EKU was aggressive. Belmonts finesse game had no chance against that kink of physicality. Everybody has seen this before out of Belmont - it's their Achilles heel. And, this is the reason that they probably will never get past the first round of the NCAA tourney until they toughen up and get a better presence on the inside (like EKU's Eric Stutts and Nick Mayo provide). Last Saturday, Nick Mayo shut Evan Bradds down.
OVC Ball
Predicting the OVC race…in mid-December

2016-17 Basketball Standings

OVCOverall

EAST

Belmont8-014-4
Morehead State6-310-12
Tennessee Tech5-39-14
Jacksonville State5-413-11
Tennessee State4-413-8
Eastern Kentucky2-69-14

WEST

UT Martin5-315-8
Murray State5-311-11
SEMO5-310-13
Austin Peay3-57-15
Eastern Illinois1-79-12
SIUE0-85-17
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