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NCAA Tournament: Southeast Missouri State Redhawks vs. Texas A&M-Corpus Christi Islanders Betting Preview

While the round of 64 does not start until Thursday, the NCAA Tournament kicks off Tuesday night with a First Four matchup between the Southeast Missouri State Redhawks (19-16) and the Texas A&M-Corpus Christi Islanders (23-10). This game will be played at the University of Dayton Arena, with tipoff scheduled for 6:40 pm ET.

The Islanders are the favorites in this one. They are -178 to win, while the Redhawks’ moneyline sits at +146. The spread features SE Missouri State as 3.5-point underdogs (-105), and the over/under for total points is 155.5.

SEMO Hopes To Keep Good Times Rolling

SE Missouri State, commonly known as SEMO, comes into this one having won the Ohio Valley Tournament, despite being the fifth seed. On their way to the championship, they took down both top-seeded Morehead State (65-58) and No. 2 Tennessee Tech (89-82). On Tuesday, they will try to keep the good times rolling and upset the Islanders.

Offensively, SEMO ranks 35th in the nation, averaging 77.2 points per game. They are led by sophomore guard Phillip Russell, who is averaging 18.2 points, 2.9 rebounds, five assists, and 1.5 steals per game.

The Redhawks have two others averaging double digits this season in guards Chris Harris (15.4 points, 4.7 rebounds) and Israel Barnes (10.3 points, 3.1 rebounds).

Defensively, SE Missouri State struggles. They rank just 338th in the nation, allowing 77.7 points per game to opponents.

Islanders Hoping To Represent Southland Conference

At 23-10 overall and 14-4 in the Southland Conference, the Texas A&M-CC Islanders had an outstanding season under head coach Steve Lutz. The Islanders have won four in a row, including wins over McNeese State (80-63) and NW State (75-71) in the Southland Tournament.

Like SE Missouri State, the Islanders struggle on the defensive end, but they are solid on the offensive end. Defensively, they rank just 248th in the nation, allowing opponents 72.9 points per game. On the offensive side, they come in 24th, averaging 78.3 points per game.

Senior guard Trevian Tennyson leads the offense for the Islanders. In 33 games, he is averaging 15.7 on 44.3% shooting and 41.2% from behind the arc. He is also averaging 2.4 rebounds and 1.2 assists per game.

Other contributors for the Islanders include forward Isaac Mushila (14.4 points, 9.7 rebounds, 1.2 assists, 1.4 steals), guard Terrion Murdix (13.4 points, 4.3 rebounds, 5.4 assists, 2.3 steals), and guard Ross Williams (9.7 points, 2.1 rebounds, and 1.3 assists).

Take SE Missouri State And The Points

Looking at the trends, SE Missouri State is 4-1 both straight up and against the spread in their last five contests. In their last seven games played in March, they are 7-0 against the spread.

For Texas A&M-CC, they are 12-1 in their last 13 games and 10-2-1 against the spread in that same span. In their last eight March games, they are 7-1.

While SE Missouri State struggles on the defensive end, their offense has been able to make up for it. With Texas A&M-CC also having a similar profile, this one could certainly be a shootout. As a result, the OVER could be in play at 155.5 (-105).

SE Missouri State will need to continue their run of strong play to win, but theey should at least be able to keep it close. Take the Redhawks and the 3.5 points (-105).

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