(10) Xavier vs. (15) Lehigh Preview
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(10) Xavier Musketeers
Notre Dame played well enough to beat a lot of teams in their second round game against the Musketeers, but in the end the difference was that the Musketeers had Tu Holloway while they didn’t. Making up for last year’s lackluster showing on the big stage, Holloway balled out against the Fighting Irish scoring 25 points. 17 of those came in the second half. With 21 seconds remaining he hit the go-ahead shot over Jack Cooley to put his team on top 64-63, a lead they wouldn’t relinquish as they moved on to win 67-63. The Musketeers frontline, which was the subject of criticism throughout the regular season, did a nice job on the boards. In the Round of 32 the Musketeers will take on the Lehigh Mountain Hawks in a game that few predicted to occur. The key for the Musketeers will be keeping C.J. McCollum in check and most importantly off of the free throw line. This game could come down to who plays better between McCollum and Holloway.
(15) Lehigh Mountain Hawks
After watching Norfolk State pull off the 15 vs. two seed upset earlier, the Mountain Hawks decided to go ahead and make history by doing the same thing themselves. It was the first time ever that two 15 seeds topped two two seeds. The Mountain Hawks played Duke tough all game long and took control late as they surprised the nation with a 75-70 upset win. They worked through C.J. Mccollum offensively. He didn’t have his best shooting game, making just 9 of 24 from the field, but he continuously got to the free throw line and did other things as well. He finished with 30 points, six rebounds, six assists and two steals. The Mountain Hawks did a great job defensively of contesting the Blue Devils shots from beyond the arc. They rely on the three ball to fall for them and on Friday night it did not; they missed 20 of their 26 looks. As long as McCollum produces like he did in the second round, they’re going to be hard to send home. Against Xavier they’re going to have to find a way to contain Holloway.
HOOPSWORLD’s pick:Xavier. After an up-and-down regular season, we’re going to go with Holloway and the Musketeers making those struggles a thing of the past by moving onto the Sweet 16.
Who do you think is going win? Chime in by leaving a comment below!
ving onto the Sweet 16.