CAA Tournament Championship Game Preview: W&M Looks To Steal Tourney Bid

Preview via Sports Network. After the game, we’ll have post-game analysis right here from Chris Dobbertean, who is in Richmond, VA for the contest:

GAME NOTES: The William & Mary Tribe are one win away from claiming their first-ever Colonial Athletic Association Tournament title, but for that to happen they will have to get past the Old Dominion Monarchs this evening at the Richmond Coliseum.

The Tribe advanced to their second CAA title game in three years with a thrilling, 47-45 victory over Northeastern on Sunday. William & Mary opened the tournament with a first-round bye and then defeated James Madison, 70-65, in quarterfinal action.

As for the Monarchs, they captured the regular-season title and the top seed with an impressive 15-3 mark in CAA action. Old Dominion also received a first-round bye before taking care of business against Towson, 86-56, in the quarterfinals. ODU had a tough time Sunday against VCU, but the Monarchs were able to post a 73-69 overtime victory over the Rams, giving themselves a shot at a fifth CAA Tournament crown and first since 2005.

The Monarchs defeated William & Mary twice this season and overall Old Dominion has dominated the Tribe, winning 62 of the 77 all-time meetings.

It was not a buzzer-beating shot, but it definitely was a highlight basket for David Schneider, as the guard drilled a three-point basket with 37 seconds left in the second half to give the Tribe their eventual, 47-45 victory over the Northeastern Huskies in semifinal play of the CAA Tournament. Oddly enough, it was the only basket made by Schneider, who finished the game 1-of-9 from the field. Not one player finished in double figures for William & Mary, as the team shot just 37.0 percent from the floor. Danny Sumner led the way with eight points, while Marcus Kitts tallied seven, to go along with nine rebounds. Schneider only connected on one basket in the win, but the guard has been the most consistent player throughout the season for William & Mary and comes into this title game averaging 15.6 ppg, to go along with 6.0 rpg. Quinn McDowell is contributing 14.1 ppg on the season, while Sumner is netting 10.2 ppg.

The Monarchs showed that they are a fighting team, as Old Dominion clawed its way back from a 12-point deficit against VCU on Sunday. Old Dominion never gave up against the Rams and eventually forced the game into overtime where the Monarchs proceeded to go flawless from the floor, connecting on all four of their field goal attempts and both of their free throws. Gerald Lee tied a career-high with 26 points, while Ben Finney and Marsharee Neely posted 11 points apiece. Old Dominion shot a respectable 49.2 percent from the floor, and dominated play on the glass by outrebounding VCU by a 44-27 margin. Lee has been the only consistent scoring threat on the season for ODU, as the guard is netting 14.8 ppg, to go along with 5.0 rpg. However, what has made the Monarchs so dangerous has been their play defensively, as Old Dominion has held the opposition to just 57.3 ppg.

The Tribe have done well by making it to this point of the tournament, but everything is stacked against them in this matchup. Old Dominion is stronger defensively, and has dominated William & Mary throughout the all-time series. Barring any unforeseen problems, the Monarchs should have no problems winning their fifth CAA title.

GAME NOTES: The William & Mary Tribe are one win away from claiming their first-ever Colonial Athletic Association Tournament title, but for that to happen they will have to get past the Old Dominion Monarchs this evening at the Richmond Coliseum.

FACTS & STATS: Site: Richmond Coliseum (11,200) — Richmond, Virginia. Television: ESPN2. Home Record: William & Mary 10-3, ODU 15-0. Away Record: William & Mary 10-6, ODU 8-6. Neutral Record: William & Mary 2-0, ODU 2-2. Conference Record: William & Mary 12-6, ODU 15-3. Series Record: Old Dominion leads, 62-15.

Monday, March 8th, 7:00 p.m. (et)

Old Dominion 62, William & Mary 50

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