Saint Louis Billikens vs. Dayton Flyers Pick & Prediction MARCH 5th 2024

No. 25 Dayton will try to rebound from a disappointing loss away from home when the Flyers play another Atlantic 10 road game on Tuesday night, this time against Saint Louis.

Dayton (22-6, 12-4) fell into third place in the conference after it failed to hold a three-point halftime lead and dropped a 77-72 decision to Loyola Chicago on Friday.

Trailing 63-56 with 5:51 remaining, Dayton tied the game with seven unanswered points. But the Flyers couldn’t get a defensive stop and were unable to grab a lead the rest of the game.

It was a frustrating loss for the Flyers, who were picked as the preseason favorite in the A-10. “Guys battled,” Dayton coach Anthony Grant said. “It was a really hotly contested game. Give them credit. They made some plays. Defensively, we knew they would be disruptive. They’ve got really good players. They’re a very well-coached team. It was a great environment today. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to come out with the win.”

DaRon Holmes II led the Flyers with 20 points and nine rebounds. Enoch Cheeks chipped in with a season-high 16 points and Nate Santos added 13.

Holmes recorded 29 points and 14 rebounds in Dayton’s 70-65 win over Saint Louis on Jan. 16.

Dayton starting point guard Javon Bennett’s availability is in question for Tuesday night after he sat out the second half of Friday’s loss at Loyola Chicago with a left thumb injury.

Kobe Elvis replaced Bennett but had seven of Dayton’s season-high 23 turnovers.

“I feel like we could have done a better job with the turnovers, especially myself. I’ve got to be able to read the double teams better,” said Holmes, who had six turnovers. “There were a couple times where I was spinning, and I didn’t see them coming and they would slap at the ball.”

Saint Louis (11-18, 4-12) is coming off one of its highest-scoring games of the season, a 94-91 win Saturday at Rhode Island. The Billikens were led by Gibson Jimerson’s 30 points.

Sincere Parker scored 16 in his return from a two-game absence because of a foot injury. However, he left the game in the second half due to a shoulder injury and did not return.

The Billikens shot 54.1 percent from the field and had a season-high 19 assists.

The Billikens will play their second game without freshman guard Djordje Curcic, who suffered a broken foot in the second half of Wednesday’s game against Richmond. He is out for the remainder of the season.

“We feel terribly for Djordje,” Saint Louis coach Travis Ford said. “He was playing his best basketball of the season. I know he will rehab very hard and come back better than ever, and we will give him all the support that he needs.”

Curcic averaged 2.9 points in 18 games this season for Saint Louis.

–Field Level Media

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