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Missouri Valley Conference Semifinal Preview: How to watch, players to watch and prediction

Can Isaiah Mosley ride the Bears past a hot Drake team?

NCAA Basketball: Missouri Valley Conference Tournament- Drake Bulldogs vs SIU Edwardsville Cougars Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

The highly anticipated Arch Madness semifinal kicks off at 6 p.m. ET in Saint Louis. Two of the hottest teams in the MVC will be battling each other.

Drake is coming off a dominating performance against Southern Illinois in the quarterfinal. The Bulldogs used an 11-0 run in the middle of the second half to give them a double digit cushion and run away with a 65-52 victory. Shaquan Hemphill lead the Bulldogs with 19 points and 10 rebounds.

The Bears are lead by the conference’s second leading scorer Isaiah Mosley who averages 19.9 points per game and shoots over 43% from distance. His front court assistant Gaige Prim averages 16.3 points and is the conference’s second-leading rebounder at 8.3 points per game. The dynamic duo gives Missouri State one of the best offenses in the country. The Bears rank in top 25 nationally in offensive efficiency and field goal percentage and they rank top nationally in free throw percentage.

Missouri State hasn’t made the tournament since 1999. This is the team that has the potential to break that streak.

As for the Bulldogs it’s more of an overall team effort. Drake has five different guys averaging double figures. Although, they will be missing one of those pieces with DJ Wilkins out for the tournament Drake is an experienced team that returned six major contributors from last year’s NCAA tournament team and added former four-star recruit Tucker Devries who leads the team in scoring at 13 points per game. Drake isn’t excellent at one particular thing but is not not bad at anything. Drake does defend well giving up just 66 points per game this season. The experience and consistency of the Bulldogs makes them a tough out.

Prediction

While DraftKings has Missouri State as a slight -1.5 point favorite, I’m going to pick Drake to pull off the minor upset. Both of these teams are capable of cutting down the Arch Madness nets. I’m going with the Bulldogs to pull off the slight upset. Mosley is an electric watch and he may carry the Bears on his back. I know what I’m getting from Drake and I trust them more late in the game.

Broadcast info

TV/streaming: CBS Sports Network, CBS Sports (dot) com, 6 p.m. ET

Where: Enterprise Center, St. Louis

DraftKings Line: Drake +1.5 Total 136.5

(Odds/lines subject to change. Visit DraftKings for more information).