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America East Tournament Championship game: Preview, odds, how to watch, more

The America East Conference will give their automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament to the winner on Saturday.

UNC-Greensboro v UMBC Photo by Mitchell Layton/Getty Images

The America East will crown their champion in the first of many conference titles on the line throughout the day on Saturday. The UMBC Retrievers and Vermont Catamounts advanced to this spot as the top two seeds of the tournament and will play for a spot in the NCAA Tournament at 11:00 a.m. ET.

UMBC: 18-13 (11-7 America East), 224 NET, 236 Ken Pom

UMBC survived their first round matchup in overtime against UMass-Lowell before knocking off Hartford by 20 points in the semifinal round. The Retrievers can hold their own on the offensive end, but their defense rates outside the top 300 in KenPom’s adjusted efficiency. UMBC is riding a five-game winning streak, and Keondre Kennedy is the team’s leading scorer with 15 points per game.

Vermont: 27-5 (17-1 America East), 56 NET, 63 Ken Pom

Vermont hammered their first two America East opponents NJIT and Binghamton by an average of 35.5 points to get to the conference title game. The Catamounts are a team that could create some chaos in the first round of the NCAA Tournament if they pull this off especially with an offense that rates inside the top 50 in KenPom’s adjusted efficiency. Ryan Davis is the top scorer with 17.1 points per game.

How to watch the America East Tournament Championship game

When: Saturday, March 12th at 11 a.m. ET
Where: Patrick Gymnasium, Burlington, VT
Livestream: WatchESPN, ESPN app

Odds for America East Tournament Championship Game from DraftKings Sportsbook:

Spread: Vermont -15.5
Total: 142.5

Odds for both teams at DraftKings Sportsbook before tournament

UMBC: +1000
Vermont: -600

Vermont -15.5

The Catamounts and Retrievers have played twice this year, and Vermont won by 17 the first time, and 27 the second time. Throw in home court advantage and a packed Patrick Gymnasium, and you’ve got a recipe for a pasting.

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