St. Bonaventure vs George Mason Preview and Prediction
St. Bonaventure vs George Mason Preview
An A-10 showdown is in store tonight as two middle of the pack teams face-off hoping to climb the conference rankings.
After earning two home wins last week, St. Bonaventure heads back on the road to face George Mason on Wednesday at the Patriot Center. The Bonnies aim to keep playing the defense that led to last week’s victories, as they limited Saint Joseph’s (67) and George Washington (52) to an average of 59 points.
George Mason has dropped its last three games, falling at George Washington and Duquesne and at home to VCU. The Colonials earned conference wins at UMass (in overtime) and at home over Saint Joseph’s and Saint Louis.
This will be the eighth meeting in the series that St. Bonaventure leads 5-2. The Bonnies have won all four meetings since George Mason joined the A-10.
The Bonnies are on the way up
Thanks to improved defense its last two games, St. Bonaventure leads the A-10 in field goal percentage defense (.415) and is second in three-point defense (.306). Nine times this season, St. Bonaventure has held opponents to under 40 percent shooting. Last week, Saint Joseph’s and GW were a combined 41-114 (.359) from the field including 9-34 from three-point range.
Senior point guard Jaylen Adams has earned A-10 Player of the Week honors three times already this year. He leads St. Bonaventure in scoring (17.9 points per game), assists (4.9) and three-point percentage (.474). Already one of the most accomplished players in the program’s history, Adams was on the preseason watch list for three national player of the year awards.
Adams’ backcourt partner Matt Mobley is averaging 17.6 points per game; combined, the duo average 35.5 points per game and are shooting .395 from three-point range. Mobley’s 24 point performance against GW was his ninth 20-point game this season.
Otis leading the way for the Patriots
Junior point guard Otis Livingston is the do-it-all player for Mason. He leads the team in scoring (16.2), assists (89), free throws (65) and three-point percentage (.409). Livingston was a preseason All-Conference third team selection.
Sophomore guard Jaire Grayer averages 14.5 points and a team-high 7.9 rebounds per game with a team-best 52 three-pointers.
The last meeting…
Jan. 7, 2017 at Reilly Center: Bonnies 82, Mason 72
Denzel Gregg scored a career high 24 points and grabbed 12 rebounds to lead St. Bonaventure The senior forward also helped key an improved defensive effort as the Bonnies held the Patriots to 42 percent shooting. St. Bonaventure led from start to finish, but it was just a four point game with 5:32 left when sophomore guard Nelson Kaputo made a three-pointer that made it a 68-61 Bona lead. Gregg’s three-point play with 1:30 remaining pushed the advantage to 11 points. Idris Taqqee also recorded a double-double with 13 points and 11 rebounds. St. Bonaventure outrebounded the A-10’s top rebounding club 39-36, including 15 on the offensive end. Kaputo chipped in a season high 13 points in 20 minutes off the bench. St. Bonaventure lost leading scorer Jaylen Adams midway through the second half due to an ankle injury. The nation’s third-leading scorer, he finished with a season-low seven points but did have seven assists. Second-leading scorer Matt Mobley was limited to eight points.
LINE: -7.5 SBU
The Bonnies struggled to open conference play but have picked it up over the past month. Jaylen Adams still isn’t right health-wise, but each game you can see him getting more comfortable. Add in Matt Mobley and Courtney Stockard, this SBU team should win and cover the points.
St. Bonaventure 77 George Mason 65
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