After not finishing easy looks in the first half, the Pirates were able to put it together a balanced attack offensively and defeat Gardner-Webb, 85-67, despite having some obstacles.
Brandon Mobley ended his night with only five points on 2-for-7 shooting due to early foul trouble. However, the Blue and White made up for his absence thanks to breakout performances from two freshmen.
Desi Rodriguez, whose parents are from the Virgin Islands, filled in quite nicely going 6-for-10 from the field with 15 points, including a nasty fast break dunk that gave the Pirates a 60-42 lead. He would also pull down nine rebounds in the contest.
Freshman Angel Delgado tallied the first double-double of his young collegiate career as he finished the night with 12 points and 11 rebounds.
Four Pirates finished in double figures, led by Sterling Gibbs with 16 points, who was also very efficient as he shot 5-9 from the field.
Gardner-Webb's only lead came early in this game when it was 3-2, but they were able to cut the deficit to eight with just over 9 minutes remaining in the game. The Pirates would answer with a 20-4 run and end any chances of a Bulldog comeback.
Isaiah Whitehead once again struggled from the field as he went 3-12 with just eight points, but did fill up the stat sheet as he tallied four rebounds and six assists.
Rebounding and defense really propelled the Blue and White to victory. The Pirates out-rebounded the Runnin’ Bulldogs 48-33, including 18-9 on the offensive glass. Defensively, the Hall held Gardner-Webb to 37 percent shooting and forced 16 turnovers. Seton Hall was also very aggressive on the defensive end as they racked up eight blocks.
Jaren Sina also got in on the act, lighting it up for 4-of-6 from beyond the arc, ending his night with 14 points.
The Hall shot a scorching 46 percent from the field for the game and 45 percent from behind the arc, which must have Coach Kevin Willard smiling.
Seton Hall advances and will take on the winner of the Old Dominion-Illinois State game Monday for the Virgin Islands Paradise Jam tournament crown.