By all standards the Seton Hall Pirates have already had themselves quite the week. Their 74-72 win in the midweek against Butler was an instant classic as Sandro Mamukelashvili rose up on the inbound to tip in the layup just as the buzzer was sounding to give the Pirates the win over a stunned Bulldogs team who moments before had tied the game up on a Sean McDermott three pointer with 8.8 seconds remaining. In the end all what was needed was just a tip at the dying embers of the game to carry the night. It was a great win that got the Pirates back on track after dropping their previous two games to Creighton and Providence.
Now their attention turns to the weekend once again as the Pirates play host to the St. John’s Red Storm who have had a mixed bag of results over their last two games with one win and one loss. The win came against Providence by an impressive mark of 80 to 69 in the final score. It was the third win on the season for the Red Storm in conference play and the first to come a team that is not DePaul. The Red Storm followed that win up with a close loss to Xavier. Against the Musketeers they had their chances and at times took the lead but in the end much like for most of play this season in the Big East, St. John’s ended up on the short end of the stick with a 77 to 74 loss as Xavier ended the game with a 8-0 run.
Now the attention for both teams shifts to this match up on Sunday with the attention for this game shifting to The Rock on Sunday. The Pirates won the first go around by a score of 82 to 79 in a game that was marked by a back and forth match up with both the Pirates and the Red Storm surging for the lead but in the end Seton Hall carrying the day as Myles Powell scored 23 of his 29 points in the second half of the game among which was his 2,000 point ball. That was then and now given the different paths that both teams have taken it looks like it could be another win for Seton Hall. For St. John’s to walk away with a win they would need to have their press down to perfection and get scoring for a wide array of options ranging from not only L.J Figueroa and Mustapha Heron but also Rasheem Dunn and a few other secondary scoring options. Seton Hall on the other hand can play at their usual pace given that Powell will dictate the tempo of the game can either kick inside to the interior Mamukelashvili or Romaro Gil, or kick it out Quincy McKnight or of course Powell who can facilitate or score on his own. In the end this could be Seton Hall win but hopefully St. John’s will have enough in the tank to make this an interesting match up. In all it should be a fun game and on another note we are coming down the final weeks of regular season. Each game at this point matters in more way than one.
Time: 2:00 PM ET
Location: Prudential Center