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New Jersey remains a Pirate state: Seton Hall defeats Rutgers 72-66

The Pirates showed who’s boss in New Jersey once again.

Kentucky v Seton Hall Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images

28 points from Myles Powell and 15 from Sandro Mamukelashvili helped to carry the Seton Hall Pirates to victory Saturday. Seton Hall defeated the Rutgers Scarlet Knights in the latest edition of the Garden State Hardwood Classic, giving The Hall a 5-1 edge in the last six meetings between the programs.

Fresh off defeating the Kentucky Wildcats in a wild game at MSG last weekend, Seton Hall was more than ready to take down their rivals from New Brunswick. But it wasn’t easy down the stretch. The Pirates made just two of their final 12 shots from the field and had no field goals in the final 2:53 of the game.

They had to survive by the skin of their teeth, and did so thanks to clutch free throw shooting. Powell, Mamukelashvili, Anthony Nelson and Michael Nzei all contributed on free throws for, essentially, the entire second half. Their final eight points came off free throws, with their last field goal being a Powell 3-pointer at the 2:53 mark.

They survived the rush from Rutgers, as Geo Baker, Ron Harper Jr. and Peter Kiss all contributed points in the final moments of the game. But the lead built up from Seton Hall’s FT shooting proved to be too steep a climb for Steve Pikiell’s bunch.

The aforementioned Baker had 14 points, while Kiss had a team-best 16 on the afternoon. Eugene Omoruyi put up 15 points of his own with eight rebounds to boot. Shaquille Doorson had a game-high 12 rebounds while Myles Johnson had nine of hi sown.

Meanwhile, the Pirates were mostly commandeered by the efforts of Powell and Mamukelashvili. Their 43 points really aided them in a big ol’ way, as no other players got into double figures. Nzei had seven points and eight rebounds, Myles Cale had eight points and eight boards, while Nelson had seven points of his own. It should be noted that Sandro came just so close to having a double-double, finishing with nine boards.

The win pushes Seton Hall to 7-3 on the season. They’ve got a big test coming up next weekend against the Maryland Terrapins in College Park. Before that, they’ll play the Sacred Heart Pioneers in their final nonconference home game of the year on Wednesday.