The TBT continues on Saturday with a loaded four-game slate featuring two semifinal matchups in the Syracuse and Wichita regions. 7 out of the 8 games went chalk on Friday, with the exception of Bleed Green upsetting Eberlein Drive in the 2-7 matchup. Let’s dive into matchups and Saturday TBT best bets!
(1) Boeheim’s Army -9.5 vs (4) The Nerd Team
The #1 seed Boeheim’s Army looked like the #1 seed Friday night in a 90-62 blowout victory. They used a balanced attack with multiple guys scoring in double figures. Their next matchup will be with the Nerd Team, who are coming off a 79-71 victory over the Brown & White. Jelan Kendrick led the way with 25 points on 11/12 shooting and Brandon Sherrod had 17 points and 10 rebounds himself.
The Nerd Team will need to make double-digits threes like they did last night to give themselves a chance in this one to pull the big upset. Boeheim’s Army rested their core guys in the 2nd half last night in the blowout win to be ready for this game. I like for the Nerd Team to keep it within striking distance with their perimeter shooting and give Boeheim’s Army a competitive game to cover, but for the experienced bunch to find a way to win and advance to the Syracuse finals.
Pick: The Nerd Team +9.5
(2) Blue Collar U -3.5 vs (3) Friday Beers
The second semifinal matchup in the Syracuse Region features two teams coming off big wins in the quarterfinals. Blue Collar U won their opener in a route over the NG Saints 91-64 due to their 16/36 shooting from 3. CJ Massinburg and Blake Hamilton both led the way scoring 16 points a piece. The Friday Beers rallied from an early deficit to roll in the 2nd half on 17/30 shooting from 3. Aubrey Dawkins led them in scoring with 21 points on 5/9 from 3.
This TBT matchup should be a competitive physical matchup throughout. I anticipate both teams will regress in their perimeter shooting numbers due to the athleticism and length each team proposes on the defensive end. Both teams also really like to get out and run in transition, so the matchup will come down to which team can get more easy ones in transition. In the end, I like for Blue Collar U to wear down the Friday Beers with their deep bench and athleticism to cover and advance to the Syracuse finals.
Pick: Blue Collar U -3.5
(1) AfterShocks -5.0 vs (4) Air Raiders
The #1 seed AfterShocks head into the semifinal matchup coming off a defensive dominating performance over We Are D3 with a 83-52 win. It was a balanced offensive attack from the AfterShocks with four guys scoring in double figures. Their opponent, the Air Raiders won a back and forth shootout over the B1 Ballers 90-89 on an Elam Ending FT from Davion Warren. Warren and ShawnDre’ Jones both carried the offensive load, each scoring 32 points a piece.
This matchup will feature two of the more physical and defensive-minded alumni-based teams in Wichita St and Texas Tech. This should be a physical defensive matchup with the pedigree of these two programs. I like the matchup for the AfterShocks because of their ability to throw multiple athletes at Warren and Jones to wear them down throughout the course of the game. I like for the AfterShocks to cover in the end and advance to the Wichita finals in front of their home crowd. This is one my Saturday TBT Best Bets!
Pick: AfterShocks -5.0
(3) Purple & Black -5.0 vs (7) Bleed Green
The final matchup of the Saturday slate features two teams coming off epic Elam Ending wins. The Purple & Black found a way to win 75-73 over the Lone Star Legends behind 30 points from K-State legend. Further, Jacob Pullen also had the Elam Ending game-winner. In the big upset of the day, the Bleed Green pulled off the stunner over the Eberlein Drive 79-78 after erasing a 12-point 4th quarter deficit. Additionally, Shannon Shorter and Brandon Jefferson both led the way combining for 39 points. In fact, it was Jordan Davis that hit the Elam Ending game-winner to advance.
This should be another competitive matchup between two evenly matched teams. The Purple & Black will need to get more scoring from the supporting cast outside of Jacob Pullen and Thomas Gibson if they want to advance. This game should come down to the very end with another exciting Elam Ending finish between these two proud alumni-based teams, Kansas St and North Texas. I like for Bleed Green to cover, but the Purple & Black to advance to the Wichita finals in front of a pro-Wildcat crowd. I love this as one of my Saturday TBT Best Bets!