7 vs 2, first half

Posted: Sunday, March 23, 2008 by Travis Cody in

There are two 7 vs 2 match ups I've been looking toward, because I think both Butler and Davidson have a chance to do some damage in this tournament.

And the first play of the game is the reason why...my perception of Tennessee is that they are sloppy. Their first two offensive sequences include a fumbled dribble on a drive to the hoop, and a travel on an inside move. The first defensive set for the Vols includes a foul.

Sorry Dix, but Tennessee must play under control to beat Butler today and I just don't think they have the patience to do it. We'll see if the Vols' athleticism overcomes the careless play.

On the other hand, Butler is a team that doesn't turn the ball over much. However the 'Dawgs have turned it over four times early, which could be an indication that they may not be able to handle the strong pressure Tennessee can put on defensively.

And with Tennessee hot from the perimeter, the Vols race out to an early 11-2 lead. That kind of pace will make the sloppy play and turnovers irrelevant if the Bulldogs can't slow the tempo and handle the Vols' pressure.

The refs are calling every little bump at the moment, which impacts Tennessee's ability to be aggressive. That could help Butler control tempo, but so far the Vols have been able to do pretty much what they want, despite turning the ball over.

Davidson is off to a good start against Georgetown, with the exception of losing a key interior player early with two fouls. They aren't shooting the ball very well, due mainly to Georgetown's defense.

But now there is a key call on Georgetown's center, and he goes to the bench with two fouls. That kind of evens things out a bit.

Butler has made a run to close with Tennessee. Butler has slowed the tempo and they are drawing fouls on the Vols' interior defenders. They've got the lead in single digits with less than three minutes to play. They need to keep it that close going into halftime.

Tennessee is still getting good drives to the rim, and shooting a decent percentage from the foul line. Butler's shooters are starting to come alive though and it's a four point game at the half.

Georgetown is playing strong defense, holding Davidson's top scorer to just two points and picking up two fouls on him. And the Hoyas are shooting the ball very well.

It's a half court game, which is helping Davidson keep the score close. But the Wildcats have been unable to prevent Georgetown from scoring in the paint.

And now the Hoyas have extended to a double digit lead at the under four minute break. Davidson needs to come back with its top players slow Georgetown's momentum.