Seton Hall must build momentum against Providence

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In the aftermath of Seton Hall’s required win over Georgetown this past weekend, Providence (14-10, 4-7) comes to town with the Pirates seeking redemption.

Seton Hall (14-8, 4-6) escaped the Verizon Center in narrow overtime fashion with their fair share of bruises in what was a hard-fought game.

Ish Sanogo picked up a nasty sprained ankle that casts doubt on his status going forward (no official word yet), but it’s probably safe to say that Mike Nzei (4.6 ppg, 3.7 rpg) will see his second straight start; Nzei scored 7 and grabbed two boards off the bench at Providence in January. 

Far from out of the woods, the Hall will be keen on finding 10+ points from at least two of Desi Rodriguez, Myles Powell and Nzei on Wednesday night — assuming Angel Delgado and Khadeen Carrington bring their respective ‘A’ games.

Seton Hall had their big three produce at the Dunk last month but received just 16 points from the rest of their team in that disappointing loss, especially from an offensive perspective.

On the other side of the equation, Providence is out of the NCAA picture barring a massive run but they are playing fairly well despite losing three of their last four.

Two of those three losses were to Villanova by a collective 19 points (not terrible) while the Friars won at Marquette and lost to St. John’s at home.

Point guard Kyron Cartwright (10.7 ppg, 6.8 apg) and forward Rodney Bullock (16.9 ppg, 6 rpg) are still Ed Cooley’s two main guns, but wing Jalen Lindsey (10.5 ppg, 4 rpg) is just as dangerous having reached double figures in four of five games since these two schools last met.

From the looks of it, Seton Hall is sitting squarely on the bubble right now (don’t worry, I will cover bracketology in another week or so if applicable) and definitely should be winning this game if they want to put on their dancing shoes for a second straight time.

Three keys to the game:

Kevin Willard needs to come up with an answer for Kyron Cartwright. The junior maestro picked the Hall apart to the tune of 20 points and 8 assists last month and truly looked a lot like Kris Dunn; he does sport the 3rd-best assist rate in the country after Dunn finished 5th last season. Cartwright is fairly efficient 21-of-56 (38%) from three, so it’s not as simple as collapsing on him, but Madison Jones and Jevon Thomas will need to do better on both sides of the ball than a collective five points, two assists, and three steals in 29 minutes of action 

Seton Hall must handle droughts better than they did in the first meeting. This has also been a glaring theme all season long, but Providence scored 15 unanswered to go from leading 19-18 to 34-18 in the first half and it increased the grade at which the Hall had to climb the rest of the game. This time around, it will be interesting to see if Willard can set the tone by suffocating a largely unimpressive Friar offense, though that hinges upon point number one.

If Ish Sanogo doesn’t lace ’em up, how does the battle on the wing play out? Desi Rodriguez looks to have somewhat turned a defensive corner and will have his work cut out for him against a Providence team that is one of the lengthiest in the land (56th in avg. height). Outside of Cartwright, the rest of Ed Cooley’s starting five all stands at 6-7 or above, which provides match-up problems on both ends of the court. Rodriguez specifically punches above his size via strength, but keep an eye on this, especially when Seton Hall is attacking.

KenPom says: No. 53 Seton Hall 70, No. 63 Providence 64 (68%)

Last 10 meetings (SH 3-7; all-time 39-47)

Jan. 14th, 2017, Providence 65, SETON HALL 61, Providence, R.I.
Feb. 25th, 2016, SETON HALL 70, Providence 52, Newark, N.J.
Jan. 16th, 2016, SETON HALL 81, Providence 72, Providence, R.I.
March 4th, 2015, Providence 79, SETON HALL 66, Newark, N.J.
Feb. 14, 2015, Providence 69, SETON HALL 62, Providence, R.I.
March 14, 2014, Providence 80, SETON HALL 74, New York, N.Y.
Feb. 28, 2014, Providence 74, SETON HALL 69, Newark, N.J.
Dec. 31, 2013, SETON HALL 81, Providence 80 (2ot), Providence, R.I.
March 5, 2013, Providence, 76, Seton Hall 66, Providence, R.I.
Jan. 13, 2013, Providence 67, Seton Hall 55, Newark, N.J.

Projected Providence starters:
PG – Kyron Cartwright
G/F – Jalen Lindsey
G/F – Alpha Diallo
F – Emmitt Holt
F – Rodney Bullock

Projected Seton Hall starters:
PG – Madison Jones
G – Khadeen Carrington
F – Desi Rodriguez
F – Mike Nzei
F – Angel Delgado

When: Wednesday, 830ET
TV: FOX Sports 1
Radio: AM 970 (Gary Cohen & Dave Popkin) / SIRIUS 134 / XM 201
Opening line: TBD

  • Andrew Herbst

    This should be a winnable game for us. Need Khadeem and Desi to get hot again. Hopefully Delgado can continue his dominance. GO PIRATES

  • PadrePirate

    I would not say that we are “on the bubble” until the next two games (vs Prov and StJ) are won. For now, we are more of a stray drop on the side of the soapdish, while MU grabs the 5th and final tourney spot (if the BE gets five in).

    A major factor, not mentioned above, will be PFs for Angel and Nzei. With Ish out, neither can afford to pick up two cheapies early in the 1H. That would mean extended minutes for Rasheed and put a lot of pressure on the guards/wings to score, which they haven’t done consistently of late. RA is going to get minutes over the next few games regardless. I hope he can defend without picking up a PF/minute

    • SHU95

      Well said, assuming Ish is out our lack of font line depth will be exposed. RA hasn’t shown much development over the past few years, so I would expect to see a small lineup at times which could mean more minutes for certainly Powell, and probably JT & perhaps even Gordon. Desi may even play a little PF. Regardless, this game is anything but a ‘gimmie’. Providence is much better than I thought they would be considering the players they lost from last years team, they have size as well. Need this one… Go Pirates!!!

      • Valentino

        We saw some of the small line-up against the Hoyas and I for one like it. It spreads the floor offensively with the added shooter and opens up the inside for some drives. Defensively we need to be disciplined in boxing out …something we have not had to much in the past.

  • Joe Schmoe

    I also would disagree with the statement that SHU is “squarely on the bubble”. Succinctly put, SHU is out if the regular season ended today.

    In order to be on the bubble, we need to have a 10-8 conference record. In addition to that, we need to finish at least 5th or 6th in the conference and upset the 4 or 3 in the BET. Finishing 7th or worse in conference and having to do a play-in consolation game in the conference tournament IS the post season for those that fall into it.

    • I used BracketMatrix.com, which largely has SH in the field. For me, think thats evidence enough to say theyre squarely on the bubble.

      • Joe Schmoe

        With all due respect, bracketmatrix is a great site with a good analytical/statistical breakdown of all the analysts producing brackets (all 98 of them). That said, the analysts are not the selection committee on selection Sunday. There is still a lot of work to do, and need to pull off quality wins vs the top half of the conference to make a bid as a bubble team. This includes winning the remaining games vs DePaul, Georgetown, Providence and St Johns, and 2 of the 4 games vs Xavier Creighton Nova and Butler. Six wins away from talking march madness…thats why those other 4 losses were so tough.

        • iratepirate

          On bubble watch we are in the “things left to do” category. I agree we are on the bubble (not off). The problem is that basically one more loss and we are off the board. Teetering on the brink.

  • The Hobokenite

    What’s the stats on free throw shooting lately? It appears they shot much better in GT win which really helped make a difference, especially Angel. Could they be turning the corner on free throws?

    • Joe Schmoe

      its improving .612 at a team

      • Jersey Jerry

        Sad to see the stat on TV Sat that ‘da HALL is the 3rd worst foul shooting team in D1 … it’s all mental and the kids need to understand that.

        • The Hobokenite

          We have to make free throws to stop the “Hack a Hall” strategy. Angel is looking more and more comfortable on the line. He can serve as an example in helping everyone else feel more comfortable. It should be everyone’s mentality to want to get to the line. I can’t wait for tomorrow’s game. We need to get out early

  • Jersey Jerry

    Saw Providence play a couple games in the Emerald Coast Classic over Thanksgiving where they beat Memphis 60-51. In the next game, then #7 Virginia demolished Iowa 74-41, which was Iowa’s second game after ‘da Hall went into Iowa and beat them 91-83. UVA beat Providence 63-52 which was a closer game than the score shows. The Friars went almost 10-minutes late in the 2nd half with only two buckets scored. Providence is a solid team and their record just does not reflect that and I think this is going to be a very close contest. Let’s hope the kids understand that it’s time to shine and bring a ‘Can-Do’ attitude to the rest of the season! GO HALL!!! I’ll be watching from the Western Gate to the Sunshine State where thousands live the way millions wish they could!