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The Montana Grizzlies host the Sacramento State Hornets on Thursday night. Can Aanen Moody and the Grizzlies get hot early? Ben Rajavuori answers.

Sacramento State vs. Montana Prediction: Can Aanen Moody, Grizzlies Get Hot Early?

The Montana Grizzlies host the Sacramento State Hornets from Missoula, Montana, tonight in Dahlberg Arena. The Montana Grizzlies enter this game with a strong 17-9 record, which includes an 8-5 record in conference play. The Hornets enter Missoula with a 6-21 record this season, including a 2-12 record in conference play. While the spread is a hefty 13 points in favor of Montana tonight, I am much more interested in the total. Let's break it down.

Sacramento State vs. Montana DATE, TIME, AND WHERE TO WATCH

  • Date: February 22, 2024
  • Game Time: 9:00 pm ET
  • Where to Watch: ESPN+

Sacramento State vs. Montana Prediction

This is going to be a lot of numbers and quickly, but hang in there with me. We're attacking the total here, but specifically the first half total. First off, Montana is 102nd in the nation in first-half scoring with 35.6 first half points on average. They drop to 125th in second-half scoring with 38.9 second half points per game. Comparing that to Sacramento State, they are 331st in first-half offense with 29.9 first-half points per game, which is pretty bad, but they are even worse in the second half. Sacramento State is 356th (seventh worst) in second half offense with just 32 second half points per game.

Now, for defense. Montana is average defensively in the first half, averaging 33.9 first-half points allowed. However, they are much better in the second half, averaging 36.4 second-half points per game allowed, which is good for 108th in the country. Sacramento State has an even more alarming split. They are 272nd in the country in first half defense, allowing 35.7 first half points per game. They then jump way up to 93rd in the country in second half defense, allowing just 36 second half points per game. They are allowing just .3 more points in the second half of games this year, which is insane because most teams usually score much more in the second half.

In the first meeting between these two this season, their game had 80 points in the first half and just 57 in the second half, which lines up with the scoring splits I broke down above. While Sacramento State has had a slow team this season and doesn't play at a very fast pace, the first-half total for tonight is just 61 points, which is very low. Given that both teams score more in the first half and both play better defense in the second half, this is a very good spot to back the first half to go over the total again.

Sacramento State vs. Montana Pick

3 Unit Pick: Sacramento State / Montana First Half Over 61 -110 Click here to see which sportsbook has the best odds

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Article Author


Ben Rajavuori is a handicapper out of Minneapolis, MN. He has been creating sports content for almost four years now and is an expert in all things NFL, MLB, NBA, UFC, and NCAAB. Ben thrives on diving deep into statistics to find the best angle on every bet. You can follow him on Twitter @WeBeatTheSpread.


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