Appalachian State (16-11, 7-8) will try to win their fourth game in as many days to grab the automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. The Mountaineers have won the last two games in overtime, over Texas State and Coastal Carolina, after defeating Little Rock in the opening round. It would be Appalachian State’s first trip to the NCAA Tournament since 2000 under Buzz Peterson.
The Panthers were the favorites to win the Sun Belt conference tournament despite finishing behind Texas State in the regular season. Georgia State has won eight straight games heading into tonight’s championship matchup.
Appalachian State Mountaineers Betting Preview
Donovan Gregory had one of the more bizarre box scores you will ever see when Appalachian State defeated Coastal Carolina in overtime 64-61. Gregory struggled on offense, going 1 for 7, but did everything else to help the team as he ended up with 4 points, 14 rebounds, six assists, and eight steals.
Adrian Delph has been on a hot streak, leading the Mountaineers to a surprise trip to the championship game. He has scored in double figures in six straight games, despite scoring under ten points in the previous five games.
Justin Forrest is the team’s leading scorer at 13.0 points per game. Gregory is Appalachian State’s best player as he averages 11 points, 5.8 rebounds, 2.3 assists, and 1.9 steals a game.
The Mountaineers are ranked 215th by Kenpom. The offense is ranked 234th in efficiency, while the defense ranks 212th.
Georgia State Panthers Betting Preview
Due to some bizarre scheduling, Georgia State has already played Appalachian State three times this season. What worries Panthers fans is that they are only 1-2 in those three games. The Mountaineers took the first two games on their home court, and Georgia State rebounded with an 85-71 victory at the GSU Sports Arena.
Corey Allen leads the Panthers in scoring at 15.2 points per game. Allen is shooting 40.6% from the three-point range.
Georgia State has a balanced attack with five players averaging in double figures. Justin Roberts, Kane Williams, Eliel Nsoseme, and Jalen Thomas are all averaging at least 10 points. Nsoseme and Thomas are both shooting 60% or greater from the field.
Kenpom has Georgia State as the 139th ranked team in the nation. The offense is 116th in efficiency, while the defense ranks 200th.
Mountaineers vs. Panthers Betting Odds & Lines
Mybookie has Georgia State as a 7-point favorite. The total is set at 137.5
Free Betting Pick
While both teams will have tired legs, Appalachian State will be playing their fourth game in four days, and the last two have gone into overtime. Georgia State likes to play up-tempo; look for them to turn that up, even more, to try and tire out the Mountaineers.
The last time these two teams met, Kane Williams and Jalen Thomas both scored over 20 points. The Mountaineers have no answer for the height inside as Thomas and Nsoseme both have big games as Appalachian State starts to tire in the second half.
Georgia State 77, Appalachian State 65
Spooky Express Free Pick: Georgia State -7