Atlantic 10 Tournament Morning Preview: GW battles for a bid
#1 Dayton Flyers vs #9 Richmond Spiders
The wounded Richmond Spiders will look to avenge a one point loss to Dayton on Friday. History this year doesn’t bode well for the Flyers, as only one #1 has gone on to win their conference tournament. The Flyers will look to flip the script on Friday.
The Flyers come in well rested, but not at full strength. Forward Kendall Pollard’s status is still TBD for Friday. That being said, the Flyers still pack a massive punch. A10 First Team guard Charles Cooke will look to continue his tear. Cooke dropped 21 points last time out against the Spiders. Boasting one of the best defenses in the nation, the Flyers will look to stop the frontcourt attack of TJ Cline. The key for Dayton is to get out and run. They need to take advantage of Richmond’s lack of depth.
The Spiders are wounded, but still alive. Trey Davis injured his ankle in the win of Fordham. Marshall Wood suffered a concussion after a car accident. All in all, the Spiders will look to TJ Cline to carry the load offensively. Cline dropped a career high 36 last time out against the Flyers. This Richmond team isn’t too hard to figure out. If they shoot well, they’ll have a chance.
While there have been a lot of upsets around college basketball, I just can’t see this one happening. Richmond is wounded, and to top it off, they had to play their starters for most of the Fordham game. I like Dayton to take care of business
#4 St. Joseph’s Hawks vs #5 George Washington Colonials
The Colonials took care of business on Thursday beating Saint Louis. The Hawks took home the victory in the only meeting between these two teams. With big NCAA implications, this will no doubt be the best game of the morning session.
DeAndre Bembry and the Hawks will look to solidify their NCAA tournament bid with a win. The A10 Player of the Year has 14 points along with 5 boards in the last matchup. Isaiah Miles has been a real difference maker this year, earning the Most Improved Award. Boasting a Top 5 offense and defense, it’s easy to say that the Hawks are well rounded. Fatigue is always an issue for every team in the tournament, and will see if the Hawks can take advantage of GW’s quick turnaround.
The pressure is on GW, who will try to make a push towards an NCAA bid. “If we lose we’re going to the NIT. I have no problem saying that,” Lonergan said. “If we win I truly believe we’ll be in the NCAA tournament.” The Colonials breezed past Saint Louis with balanced scoring, GW had three players in double figures. In order for the Colonials to get the win, they will need help from their bench. GW got a total of 7 bench points in the last time out against St. Joe’s.
This has the possibility of being the best game of the day. This is a really hard one to decide on. KenPom has St. Joe’s by 2. I think GW comes out and plays inspired for an NCAA bid, and comes away with the win.