December 15, 2018

NCAA Tournament 2018: UCLA vs St

14 March 2018, 06:00 | Anna Jefferson

USA TODAY Sports Images

UCLA Bruins head coach Steve Alford and forward Kris Wilkes

St. Bonaventure's odds to win the NCAA Tournament were 500-1 according to BetDSI coming into this one. "Yeah", Alford said. "But we don't control that". Sixth-seeded Iowa is making its first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2015 after finishing third in the Big Ten.

UCLA and St. Bonaventure are battling for the No. 11 seed in the East Region, which would mean a Thursday night first-round game against No. 6 Florida Gators in Dallas.

Prior the loss over the weekend, Bonnies (25-7) won 13 straight and have won 25-games in a season to matched the school record set by the 1969-70 team, which went to the Final Four. The guard is averaging a career-high 3.6 turnovers per game, which is also somewhat a result of increased minutes.

The Saint Louis native is questionable for the Bonnies' NCAA Tournament game with UCLA tonight inside UD Arena, coach Mark Schmidt acknowledged Monday, but more signs seem to point to him playing. This could be the matchup that tilts the game in favor of the Bruins, if Holiday doesn't do it himself. The Bruins should win this game, and then move to the first round, where they will have a chance against the Florida Gators.

The Bonnies have lost their only two games against UCLA, in 1973 and '74 but say they are emboldened by facing a school that has produced National Basketball Association greats Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Bill Walton, among many others. Combined with Holiday and Goloman, the Bruins shouldn't be overwhelmed by the moment, even if they had to fly to southwestern OH to face an unfamiliar opponent in an unfamiliar arena.

FAMILIAR ARENA PART 2: LIU Brooklyn coach Derek Kellogg was sacked by MA last season after losing to St. Bonaventure in the A-10 tournament.

Courtney Stockard, who was was injured in the A-10 Tournament, will be a game-time decision.

The 6-foot-6 forward had been playing his best basketball of the season before suffering the injury, averaging 23 points and nine rebounds while shooting 58 percent (33-of-57) from the field over his previous four games, including the Richmond contest. Head coach Steve Alford brought the team to the Sweet 16 in three of his first four years with the team. Alford, who has led the Bruins to the NCAA Tournament for the fourth time in five seasons, said he was surprised they were picked last and were sent to Dayton. St. Bonaventure is driven by the guard play of seniors Adams (19.8 points per game) and Matt Mobley (18.5). In each year of the First Four, at least one team has won a first-round game.

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