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Pirates Look to Ride Momentum into MSG Battle with St. John’s

A win would give the Pirates 20 for the season, and could secure their third consecutive NCAA Tourney berth.

NCAA Basketball: Seton Hall at Providence Stew Milne-USA TODAY Sports

Seton Hall Pirates (19-9, 8-7) vs. St. John’s Red Storm (14-14, 3-12)

WHERE: Madison Square Garden, New York, NY

WHEN: 12 p.m.

TV: FOX (Gus Johnson and Donny Marshall)

LINE: SJU -2.5

ALL-TIME: St. John’s leads 59-39

The Seton Hall Pirates are coming off back to back wins for the first time in nearly a month heading into Saturday’s big-time matchup at MSG against St. John’s.

The Pirates will be a man short in this one, as leading scorer Desi Rodriguez will not play after suffering an ankle injury during Wednesday’s portion of the game between Seton Hall and Providence. Rodriguez suffered the injury slipping on the slick floors at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center.

After a four-game winning streak that saw them take down Duke and Villanova, among others, the Red Storm were back in the loss column on Wednesday when they fell at Marquette, 85-73.

The unquestioned leader of this St. John’s team is Shamorie Ponds, who is averaging 21.6 PPG in Big East play. He will be a handful for the Pirates to contain defensively.

As for Seton Hall, they will need someone to step up in the absence of Rodriguez, who had a career-high 33 points in Sunday’s win over DePaul. Khadeen Carrington could be that guy, after he dropped 25 points in the win over Providence, 14 of which came after the game resumed Thursday afternoon. With Rodriguez out, Carrington became more of a score-first guard which is was made him one of the best players in program history.

Look for Myles Powell to get looks on the perimeter as well. He has been hot as of late, and when he has his three-point stroke working, there’s no stopping him.

Whenever these teams go at it inside Madison Square Garden, it’s always a classic. Look for that trend to continue today.