1. The Golden Eagles live and die by the three. But when they live…
Led by Matt Carlino, the Golden Eagles shot the daylights out of Seton Hall. Whether it was from the field or from downtown, the Pirate defense struggled to keep up with Carlino around screens and when they left him wide open from three point land, it was a done deal. Carlino had 26 points and made eight of his 12 three point looks.
"Collectively I think it just really clicked for us tonight." Carlino said about the offense.
Luke Fischer added 14 points and seven rebounds in the win and the Golden Eagles got a great defensive performance from him too.
Golden Eagles head coach Steve Wojciechowski said of his team, "I thought it was one of our better games this season."
2. No NIT for Seton Hall
This loss likely erodes the Pirates’ chances at playing any meaningful postseason basketball. Some projected them as a six seed in the NIT, but with only 16 wins there is a good chance that The Hall will miss out. That is saying something when this team looked NCAA Tournament-good at the beginning of the season.
The Pirates were led by the Isaiah Whitehead who had 12 points on 5-10 shooting from the field. No one else was in double figures for The Hall. Defensively the Pirates really struggled and this game was a microcosm of the second half of this season.
Seton Hall coach Kevin Willard said after the game, "We became very fragile in the second half of the year, which sometimes happens."
For the second straight season, the Pirates have a disappointing season, but it looks like Willard's job is safe. This offseason and next season will be an interesting one for Seton Hall.
3. Game came down to threes and lack of momentum sustained by The Hall
Marquette wanted this game more than Seton Hall and everyone at The Garden could tell from the opening tip. They were hustling more and getting many more second chance opportunities than the Pirates. When the Pirates went on a run, the Golden Eagles were there to stop them in their tracks. As Seton Hall was finishing the first half strong, Steve Taylor Jr. banked in a three pointer at the buzzer. Marquette came out in the second half and did not look back.
Towards the end of the game, the Marquette student section was chanting, "We want Nova!" They will get their wish as Marquette looks to do what the Pirates did last season: upset the Wildcats in the quarterfinals.
Wojo said on their next game, "It's going to be a great challenge," he added, "We are going to have to play a great game on both sides of the ball."
If Marquette is able to get another great game from Carlino, the Golden Eagles might have a shot to win it. Three pointers and strong defense will be the key just like it was tonight against the Pirates.