NEWARK, N.J. — Playing with a 22-point lead late in the first half, everything was coming up roses for Seton Hall. Then things escalated and got ugly.
Leading 49-27 with under a minute to play following a 13-0 Pirates run amidst a Manhattan scoring drought, it looked like the Hall was going to carry a cozy cushion into the locker room after handling their guests’ full court press with ease.
Instead, a lengthy monitor review following a physical skirmish underneath Seton Hall’s basket which primarily involved Angel Delgado, Myles Powell, and the Jaspers’ Zane Waterman and Rich Williams, left Powell and Williams headed to their respective locker rooms early.
The pair were handed flagrant twos, which come with an ejection but no suspension since the skirmish was not declared a fight; Delgado and Waterman, who initiated the fisticuffs, were handed technicals.
The 15-second heated exchange gave a black eye to an otherwise encouraging performance from Seton Hall en route to a 74-62 win that appears closer than it really was.
Appearing prepared, the Pirates didn’t look challenged by Manhattan’s style of play and diced it up via full court spacing and some excellent ball movement.
Powell (13p, 4a) was also Seton Hall’s best player on the court early as he scored in every way imaginable, added four assists, and capped it all off with a steal-dunk sequence in the open court.
The sophomore scoring guard was escorted off the court after the incident and tweeted in support of his teammates shortly thereafter.
Seton Hall remained first-best coming out of the half and didn’t allow a sloppy Manhattan team which turned it over 21 times, to creep close enough to threaten until closing the deficit very late on.
Now 11-2 with Creighton on the menu next Thursday, Seton Hall primarily has issues to deal with that don’t have much to do with X’s and O’s: Absent from the bench today, starting forward Ish Sanogo (4.3 ppg, 4.6 rpg) is facing a suspension of unknown length (more on that from Willard soon), coming on the heels of the recent Jordan Walker transfer drama. Luckily, Powell escaped suspension to mitigate that concern just a bit.