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23 de Febrero de 2023 a las 17:03

Photo courtesy of Gregory Fisher, USA Today
Article by J.D. Waker
Co-Host and Columnist of The Sports Den, Spanglish Sports World, Spanglish World Network, La Ronda del Dia, Zingo TV, Stream Punk Entertainment,La Portada Canada
Philadelphia. - The Seton Hall Pirates are one of the best defensive squads in the Big East, but their offense has had a very rough time recently. The struggle hit a new low on Saturday night at Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia as the Pirates dropped a tough one to the Villanova Wildcats 58-54 in a game that was an ugly rock fight from start to finish and dealt a big blow to the Pirates NCAA tournament hopes. Eric Dixon paced the Wildcats (12-13/6-8 Big East) with 19 points and Tyrese Samuel had a double-double for the Pirates (15-11/8-7 BE) with 14 points and 10 rebounds. 
The defensive tone was set early on in this game. At the 13:30 mark of the first half the score was still only 3-3. The Pirates had a quick burst to go up 11-7, then Villanova went on a 17-3 run over a five minute stretch to go up 24-14 with 3:28 remaining. Just before halftime Kadary Richmond went coast to coast in only five seconds but his layup was blocked out of bounds by Brandon Slater of the Wildcats. With one second left Richmond inbounded to Al-Amir Dawes in the corner just over the line to hit a long two pointer to close the deficit to 27-20 at halftime. 
An Eric Dixon layup put Villanova up 37-24 early in the second half. Richmond rebounded a Wildcats miss and passed the full length of the court to find Tyrese Samuel under the basket at the other end for a layup. On the next Pirates trip down the floor Femi Odukale missed a layup but Richmond grabbed the offensive rebound under the basket and was immediately swarmed under the basket by multiple Wildcat defenders. Richmond found Samuel coming towards the scrum and was able to thread the needle through the swarm to get the ball to Samuel who went up for the dunk to spur a 13-1 Pirates run to close the gap to 1 point, 38-37 with 9:30 left. 
Villanova answered with a 15-2 run of their own for the next six minutes punctuated by a reverse layup by Slater putting the Wildcats up 53-39 with just under three minutes left. The Pirates still had fight left in them, scoring eight points in the next 1:10 on two Dawes free throws and quick three pointers by Odukale and Dawes to close the gap to 53-47 with 1:45 left. Dixon hit a baseline jumper that appeared to end the Pirates hopes but they refused to give up before running out of clock when a Jamir Harris three pointer with 6.6 seconds left closed the final deficit to four points with a final score of 58-54. 
News and Notes:
  • This was only the second game Seton Hall has lost this season when they held an opponent under 70 points. The first was the Pirates 60-55 loss to Siena in Orlando in November.
  • Dre Davis was sidelined again for the Pirates for the fourth straight game with a sprained ankle. 
  • Villanova’s Caleb Daniels hit a three pointer early in the second half to go over 2000 points for his five year career with Tulane and Villanova.
  • Seton Hall’s Jamir Harris also hit a milestone with a three pointer in the second half, passing 1000 points for his five year career with Minnesota, American, and Seton Hall
  • The next game for Seton Hall is Tuesday at home at 6pm against Georgetown showing on CBS Sports Network. Villanova plays Butler at home at Finneran Pavilion on Tuesday at 8pm on CBS Sports Network.