Thanks in part to 25 second half points by sophomore guard Isaiah Whitehead, the Pirates finished the season strongly with a 80-64 victory over the Blue Demons in Rosemont, Illinois. The Abraham Lincoln High School alum finished the game with 33 points on just 15 shots and knocked down six 3-pointers on Saturday afternoon.
With the victory, Seton Hall finishes 22-8, 12-6 in the BIG EAST, and 6-2 following losses in the 2015-16 season. Their 22 regular season wins are the highest mark the program's had since going 23-6 in the 1992-93 regular season.
DePaul was spearheaded in a losing effort by the likes of Billy Garrett Jr. and Myke Henry. Garrett Jr. scored 18 points while the senior Henry finished out his final regular season game with 15 points.
Here's what we learned:
1. Isaiah Whitehead is showing out at the right time
He might not win BIG EAST Player of the Year, but you can probably liken Whitehead's play to another local favorite: Yoenis Cespedes, whose late charge fueled the New York Mets to the MLB Playoffs. Like Cespedes, Whitehead has performed magnificently down the stretch for the Pirates including his 33-point performance today with 25 of those 33 scored in the second half. The Brooklyn native's play has helped Seton Hall nearly secure their first bid to the NCAA Tournament in 10 years and if he continues to play well, one might suspect he could very well turn pro. For now though, we'll bask in this glory.
2. Seton Hall's season is historically great
The 2015-16 season is already one for the record books, as the Pirates picked up the fifth most regular wins in program history (22). This matches their effort from the 1950-51 campaign and is in the company of some of Seton Hall's best seasons ever. It's the most wins they've amassed since the 1992-93 season when they won 23, and third-most since their memorable 1988-89 campaign when they won 24. So far, this year is historically great, and one Pirate fans will soon certainly not forget. What's more? The best could be on its way.
3. DePaul went down swinging
The Blue Demons had yet another disappointing season int he BIG EAST, but their efforts certainly are worthy of praise. They kept it quite close with Seton Hall all day and just could not stop the hot shooting of Isaiah Whitehead, who had an answer for just about every swing that the Blue Demons delivered. Optimism may be at a premium in Chicago but with Eli Cain, another year of Billy Garrett and some good players coming in 2016, next year could be quite an improvement if things pan out well.