Calvin’s win expectancy jumped from 50% (where all games start) to 71% just ten seconds into the game as Calvin took a 2-0 lead on a Tom Snikkers field goal. It wouldn’t dip below 70% for the rest of the game.
This was a textbook wire-to-wire beat down, with the win effectively secured with five minutes still to play in the first half. There was really no point in this game in which Olivet made an actual run at competitiveness. Their best stretch of multi-possession sustained play might have been keeping the Calvin lead right around seven from the 13:09 mark to the 9:44 mark in the first half.
- It’s excellent news that Calvin’s best two shooting games of the year have been their last two. Versus Trine they effectively shot .644, and here they effectively shot .623.
- The game’s 127.4 offensive efficiency rating was also the best we’ve seen this year, and one of the top two even going back to last season. Only last year’s 116-65 win over Alma rated as a more efficient offensive day.
- Caveat that this game was against Olivet who is really, really terrible on defense.
- I’m slightly disappointed that Calvin didn’t hold Olivet below their season average offensive efficiency rating (they nailed it at 92), but considering the extra time given to guys like Stout, Van Eck, and even Dykstra, it’s not so bad. The starters sat a lot in the second half.
- He’s not shooting the ball a lot, but it’s great to see Brian Haverdink getting his offensive groove on. He’s effectively shooting .500 in conference play (.409 from long range!). Haverdink isn’t a guy that will take over and score in bunches, but he’s hitting his open looks.
- I don’t know what’s up with Jordan Mast’s minutes. After starting for several games (getting 20-25 minutes), he’s only seen about 13 minutes for the last three games. He’s only missed three shots in the last five games; he’s effectively shooting .896 (!!!!!) on 24 shot attempts in conference play (7-12 on three point field goals).
- What can opposing teams do when Tom Snikkers and Bryan Powell combine to go 17 of 22 from the field? Absolutely nothing.
- Look down the list at those PPWS numbers. LOOK AT THEM. The only “inefficient” scorer was David Rietema who was 1-3, but he had 7 assists (18 assists in the last two games).
First Half Wrap Up
All things considered, I’m happy with where Calvin is at. Actually, to clarify, I’m happy with how they’ve been playing since the MIAA season began. The home loss to Albion is looking like a killer, but, overall, they’ve really stepped up their level of play. This was a team that once lost to Anderson by 13 and only beat Willamette and Finlandia by single digits, but now they’ve four of five, with three of the wins coming by 21 points or more.
The second half of conference play holds four road games, but the two toughest games (Adrian and Hope) are at home. It’s not unfathomable for Calvin to go 4-0 on the road against Trine, Kalamazoo, Albion, and Olivet, so 10-4 looks like a real possibility. Even dropping two more games would give them a 9-5 record, which was where they ended up last year. Obviously not what we’d like to see, but perhaps it’s acceptable considering the injury situation.
I’d like to hold onto hope of a Pool C tournament bid, but it doesn’t look good. Best case scenario for Pool C would be winning out before losing to Hope in the MIAA Tournament Championship game, but according to my preliminary number crunching, they’d be probably looking at a “last four out/next four out” scenario. Maybe 25-40% chance that they could get in if they finish 8-1 (which isn’t likely in the first place) depending what the other teams do. The team’s sights (with respect to the NCAA Tournament) need to be on finishing #2 in the league to get the home game for the first round and then winning a tough road game at Hope.
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