It’s day 2 at the TBT and we have a pair of regional semifinals in the Omaha and Rucker Park regions. In the Omaha Region, it went chalk in the quarterfinals with the exception of a 3-6 upset of the Big 5 over the Ex-Pats. Further, in the Rucker Park Region, all the higher seeds won their quarterfinal matchups, but 3 out of the 4 games were decided by 4 points or less. Let’s look at these regional semifinals that are scheduled for today and the TBT Best Bets! Check out my TBT Bracket Preview here!
(1) Gutter Cats -6.5 vs (4) Always Us
The Gutter Cats defeated The Cru 88-78 in the opening round. They were led in scoring by their guards, QJ Peterson (19 points) and Tyrese Rice (16 points). As a matter of fact, the Gutter Cats shot the ball really well as a team, including 12/25 from 3. Meanwhile their opponent, Always Us rallied from a halftime deficit to defeat the Jackson Underdawgs in a thriller 79-78. For Always Us it was Jacob Young who carried the offensive load pouring in 27 points.
This game will come down to the guard play and whichever team’s guards play better will end up advancing. Additionally, I like the backcourt experience and firepower of Rice and Peterson to get it done for the Gutter Cats to go to the Omaha Region final. I love this game as a TBT Best Bet!
Pick: Gutter Cats -6.5
(2) Team Arkansas -1.0 vs (3) Omaha Blue Crew
Team Arkansas was able to grind out a defensive battle over DaGuys STL. They struggled to make shots in the opening round, where they only were able to shoot 38% from the field as a team including just 3/15 from 3. However, they were able to grind out the win by pounding the ball inside to Hunter Mickelson, who had 20 points & 12 rebounds. On the other side, Omaha Blue Crew used a balanced offensive attack to get the win behind 10 different guys who logged minutes and scored.
This game will be a tightly contested game between two evenly matched teams. The Omaha Blue Crew will have the home-court advantage in their corner. However, I like Team Arkansas to find a way to make a couple more shots and advance over the home team to advance to the finals.
Pick: Team Arkansas -1.0
Rucker Park Region:
(1) YGC -6.5 vs (4) HBCUnited
YGC held off a tough-minded Chicago Hoopville team for an opening-round win at Rucker Park. YGC was led by Xavier Rathan-Mayes, who scored 26 points including 11/13 from the FT line. In the other matchup, it was HBCUnited advancing by holding off a late rally from Skip To My Lou. In fact, HBCUnited had five different guys score in double figures. They were led in scoring by Brandon Tabb, who scored 14 points.
This will mark day 2 at Rucker Park and both teams will have a game under their belts now. I like the region favorites YGC to play better in day 2 and wear down HBCUnited on their way to the Rucker Park Region final.
Pick: YGC -6.5
(2) Americana for Autism -5.0 vs (6) Big 5
Americana for Autism held off an upset determined Peacock Nation team. They were led by Nigel Johnson, who had 14 points and the Elam game-winner to advance. Furthermore, the other matchup was the Big 5 pulling the upset over the Ex-Pats behind an unbelievable team shooting performance. The Big 5 shot 79% from the field and 77% from 3 behind 21 from Ramon Galloway Sr.
This matchup will come down to the lead guard matchup between Johnson and Galloway. Lastly, I like the Philly guards to continue their momentum with another upset win to advance to the finals as a TBT Best Bet!