Bowling Green (1-2) at Saint Louis (4-0)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday, November 23, 8 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Chaifetz Arena (10,600) -- Saint Louis, Missouri. Television: Fox Sports Midwest. Home Record: BGSU 1-1, SLU 2-0. Away Record: BGSU 0-1, SLU 2-0. Neutral Record: BGSU 0-0, SLU 0-0. Conference Record: BGSU 0-0, SLU 0-0. Series Record: Bowling Green leads, 4-1.
GAME NOTES: The Bowling Green Falcons will try to hand the Billikens their inaugural loss of the season when they square off with Saint Louis in a non- conference bout at Chaifetz Arena on Saturday as part of the Cancun Challenge.
The Falcons are 1-2 heading into Saturday's action after a very difficult early season slate. Bowling Green coasted past Division III foe Earlham before suffering a home loss to South Florida and a road setback at Wisconsin. The Falcons have struggled on the offensive end versus their Division I opponents, which is understandable considering the Bulls and Badgers are two of the top defensive squads in the nation. They are averaging only 62.5 points per game and have gone 5-of-26 from beyond the arc over their past two outings.
Coach Jim Crews is off to a great start to the 2013-14 season after leading the Billikens to the Atlantic 10 regular season and tournament titles as the interim head coach last season. Saint Louis is 4-0 after earning a 72-55 victory over Oral Roberts on Thursday. The team has also defeated Southeast Missouri State, SIU Edwardsville and Southern Illinois. The Billikens have been impressive on both ends of the floor with an average of 79.2 points per game to their oppositions average of 61 ppg.
This will be the sixth meeting in history between these schools. BGSU holds a 4-1 all-time series lead.
Despite falling to Wisconsin, BGSU outscored the Badgers, 42-30, in the paint and tallied 14 points off of turnovers to its opponents 11. The poor 3-point shooting hurt the Falcons, as Wisconsin drained 12-of-20 from beyond the arc to gain a comfortable lead. Spencer Parker and Jehvon Clarke both finished 7- of-14 from the field to combine for 32 points. Cameron Black added 10 points, but the Falcons' reserves scored only six points in Madison. BGSU's lack of depth has hurt it in the early going as its starters are being asked to do too much. Clarke has been excellent with averages of 16.3 points, five assists and 3.3 steals through his first three outings. The Falcons could receive a big lift if Chauncey Orr, who has played in just one game this season, is able to return from his knee injury. Orr is listed as questionable due to a sprained knee.
The Billikens used a collective effort to down ORU as four players scored in double figures. SLU trailed by three points at the break before holding ORU to 30 percent shooting from the floor to pull away over the final 20 minutes. Jordair Jett compiled 15 points, four assists and three steals while Rob Loe finished with 10 points and just one rebound shy of a double-double. Mike McCall, Jr. and Dwayne Evans chipped in 10 points each. Evans had an off- night, making only 4-of-12 attempts from the field. He is leading the team in scoring column at 13.5 ppg, while Jett is a close second with 13.3 ppg to go along with 4.3 apg.
BGSU is a decent team on the defensive end, but the Billikens will be able to convert a great deal of the Falcons' turnovers into buckets to win easily. Chaifetz Arena is not a friendly environment for visitors, which is one of the reasons SLU has a solid chance of repeating as A-10 champion in 2013-14.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Saint Louis 80, Bowling Green 61
11/23 10:34:05 ET