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Closest to the Pin Round 9: St. John's

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No one came close to picking the score in this one. Vegas and the VUHoops crowd both were way off the mark. However, there are always winners in the Closest to the Pin contest, and in this round we had four including two first-timers. Of significance, pacADAM strengthened his hold on first place by earning three points in this round. jnmurf16 moved into sole possession of fourth place with five points and could be a factor before this one is over. All-in-all, it was a good win for the Cats, who despite sloppy play and sub-par scoring from JVP and James Bell, took care of business against a red-hot Johnnies team that was fighting for its NCAA tournament lives. I'll take it. Go Cats!

Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sport

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RESULTS:  With the Cats nail-biting win in a low-scoring game over St. Johns, 57-54, we congratulate four VUHoops readers who earned points in this round.

  1. jnmurf16 (Nova 68, St. John's 64) awarded 5 points
  2. schitzengigles10 (Nova 71, St. John's 61) awarded 5 points
  3. pacADAM (Nova 65, St. John's 68) awarded 3 points
  4. Corollary (Nova 69, St. John's 65) awarded 1 point

The updated leader board after nine rounds is provided below.

VUHOOPS vs. VEGAS:  Based on the average predicted scores of the VUHoops Crowd and the posted Vegas line, we would have had a PUSH by taking ‘St. John's getting 8.5 points (WIN) and betting the OVER (LOSS).  After nine rounds, we would remain up $400.

LEADER BOARD

Player Points
pacAdam 13
Kantcant 8
NovaEngineer 8
jnmurf16 7
jwscones 6
NovaDave 6
novanation63 6
BosshogHazzard 5
Gkaram01 5
Original Honey Badger 5
ryanshock24 5
schitzengigles10 5
speedracer33 5
trevor.pleasant 5
Villanovafan152 5
sjkqw 4
villanovakevin14 4
Ed Dechellis 3
efgvu1977 3
NewIsAlwaysBetter 3
Nova'85 3
novAbrasion 3
Steve 92 3
Wildecat15 3
Mike J 2
BrendanColliton 1
Brian Ewart 1
Corollary 1
Ed Donohue 1
Jack The Tripper 1
kevin.pulsifer 1
Lahey 1
Novabrasion2 1
Ryan Boggio 1
tk1434 1
Wildcat91 1
Zachary Rahn 1

UPDATE (February 22, 1:35 PM, Tip-Off) ... Here's how the VUHoops Crowd sees this one:

# Reader Predictions: 40

% Picking Cats to Win: 92%

Wisdom of VUHoops' Crowd Prediction:

o   Spread: Villanova -8.0

o   Over/Under: 146.0

o    Final Score: Cats 77 - St. John's 69

Vegas Odds Makers' Prediction:

o   Spread: Villanova -8.5

o   Over/Under: 142.5

o    Final Score: Cats 76 - St. John's 67

SCATTER PLOT OF PREDICTED SCORES

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Window Opening (February 21): The window is now open for our readers to post their predicted final scores for Saturday's game vs. the red-hot St. John's Red Storm in the ninth round of the Closest to the Pin Contest. PacAdam remains in first place after eight rounds. Click HERE to see the full leader board and HERE to see the official contest rules.

Villanova (23-3, 11-2 conference) is ranked #9 in the AP Poll, #4 in the RPI and #46 SOS. The Cats average 80.7 PPG while giving up an average of 68.5 PPG.

St. John's (18-9, 8-6) is not ranked in the AP Poll but is ranked #51 in the RPI and #46 SOS. The Red Storm average 73.4 PPG while giving up an average of 66.3 PPG. St. John's comes into town riding a six-game winning streak and winners of nine of their last ten. Over that ten game stretch, their sole loss was at Creighton (-3), but they revenged that loss at home two weeks later, defeating the Jays by five. Their other eight wins during the ten game stretch have come vs. Dartmouth (+14), vs. Seton Hall (+1), at Butler (+17), vs. Marquette (+15), at Providence (+10), at Seton Hall (+1), vs. Georgetown (+22) and vs. Butler (+25).

Enter your predicted final score in the comments section in the format: Nova xx, St. John's yy. Good luck to you all!