|This is basically Calvin's entire team resting because they thought there was a game but there wasn't.|
We're all going to watch on Matchup Monday but, should Calvin fail to win the MIAA's automatic bid into the NCAA Tournament, they're not going to hear their name called. I mean, we're going to want it, and hope for it, and strain to hear it, but once we've exhausted all 19 fingers and toes (that's normal, right?) ticking off Pool C candidates we're going to come to terms with the hard truth.
Calvin is locked into an in-region winning percentage greater than .900, but they're not going to get an at-large big. We've seen the regional rankings and we know this is the case -- we don't believe it -- but we know it.
So heading into this MIAA Tournament Calvin needed to heed the advice of Master Yoda. You either DO win the AQ or you DO NOT. There's really no room for TRY.
I was nervous as heck heading into Thursday's semifinal with Adrian. They've given Calvin everything they had (and more) over the last three years and it's never been easy. It's true that they're a shell of the team that came into MIAA play undefeated and ranked #7 in the nation, but that defense has been there all season, and it's that defense that's given Calvin fits.
But the Knights didn't mess around with an overmatched Bulldog team. They pretty much took it right to them on both ends of the floor and, though they didn't put the game away in the first half, quickly stretch the lead to a comfortable number.
Adrian never really made a run at Calvin in the second half and it was clear with 10 minutes to play that Calvin was going to coast to a relatively easy victory. They were efficient, tough on defense, took care of the ball, rebounded well, didn't foul, and shared the ball. It was, quite frankly, a better played game than we could have asked for.
But that's not enough. It doesn't really matter that Calvin won by 27 and not three the result is the same. It only counts for one win which is one short of two, and two's the number of wins they need in this conference tournament in order to make the big dance. There's no time to rest or get cocky because it's still win-or-go-home and you-know-who is coming to town on Saturday.
They were good.
Estimated possessions: 58
Offensive Efficiency: 121.9 (points per 100 possessions)
Defensive Efficiency: 75.5 (points per 100 possessions)
100 is roughly average on the efficiency scale, and Calvin has performed around 110 on the offensive end and 85 on the defensive end for the season. Needless to say beating those numbers by 10 on each end is a very good thing.