114-31 was not the final score of this game, but it was the final score of one of Champion Baptist’s losses this year. 94-67 was also not the score of this game, but it was the final score of Harding’s game on December 2nd. What do these games have in common? They were played against a common opponent, Philander Smith.
There are a lot of potential explanations for that ridiculous 83-point margin in the first game. First of all, this is Champion Baptist’s first year of basketball, and they are a very new, 500-student school. Secondly, Philander Smith doesn’t win a lot of games themselves, so they were probably very excited to face a team with less talent, and thus they ran up the score. Who knows what happened in that game? It doesn’t matter, except that it was a sign that this one was probably going to get really ugly.
I have to commend Coach Morgan and the Bisons for really not running up the score. It may look like they did anyway, since the final was 93-41, but this was a severely undermatched team, and the starters only received minimal playing time. Jesse Bynum led the team in minutes with 26, and Patrick Andrepont and Cole Kee were the leading scorers (23 and 18).
Here are the keys:
|65.7||Predicted net efficiency|
|74.5||Actual net efficiency|
There’s really not much you can get from this game statistically. Sure, Champion shot terribly, rebounded terribly, and couldn’t get us to turn the ball over, but that was to be expected. The Tigers’ personnel looked more like that of your less-than-average high school team (maybe a high school with 500 students). The Bisons understandably did not give their full effort, so as not to embarrass the Tigers. With that in mind, there really are no individual stats worth mentioning.
Up next for the Bisons are some important home games against Arkansas-Monticello and Southern Arkansas. The Bisons will have to win at least 5 of their last 7 games to finish .500 and have a shot at the Gulf South Conference tournament (5th place in the division). That would require winning all 4 home games (UAM, SAU, Christian Brothers, Arkansas Tech) and stealing away a road game against UCA, Ouachita, or Henderson. The Bisons would then likely need to win the conference tournament in order to advance to the NCAA tournament. I think they’re on the right track now, with Steven Barnett getting more playing time and Savadogo asserting himself in the paint a bit more, but solid contributions from Sims (who was in street clothes for this game), Andrepont, Thies, and the other role players will be necessary for a strong finish.