NEWARK – Seton Hall fought out of a 13-point first half hole to upset Wichita State 80-76 in overtime on Saturday afternoon in Newark. Desi Rodriguez, Angel Delgado and Isaiah Whitehead were the go-to triumvirate for the Hall as they combined for 49 of their 80 total points.
Following a quick start to the game that featured a bunch of back and forth between Angel Delgado (14 pts, 11 rebs) and Shaq Morris (6 pts, 4 rebs) in the paint, Wichita State reeled off a 12-2 run to build an 18-8 lead just seven minutes into the game to instantly silence the Prudential Center crowd.
Seton Hall’s half court offense looked impotent for most of the first period and had to be bailed out by back-to-back Isaiah Whitehead (17 pts, 2 asts) triples to keep his team in the game just prior to the under-eight.
Flirting with a huge deficit at 33-20 and still without an assist while turning the ball over seven times, the Hall was able to build some momentum going into the half when they cut the Shockers’ lead to eight to bring the crowd to their feet for perhaps the first time all season.
All things considered, the eight-point gap seemed generous after considering Wichita State’s 10 assists on 15 made baskets along with six turnovers compared to Seton Hall’s 2 dimes on 11 made shots and nine turnovers.
Seton Hall carried their momentum into the second half when they were able to trim their deficit to 53-46 after clamping down on defense on several possessions in a row. It looked like the Hall had really missed their chance to turn the game around after going 0-for-5 during this stretch but six-straight points from Desi Rodriguez (18 pts) that were capped off by a rim-rocking two-handed slam brought Seton Hall within five for the first time since the opening minutes of the first half.
The Hall’s comeback climb continued via tough defense against a Wichita State team that was racked with fouls and Veer Singh (5 pts) drove the Rock’s crowd into an absolute frenzy after drilling a corner triple to bring his team within a single point going into the under-eight media timeout.
The comeback would continue.
Wichita State threw the ball right to Derrick Gordon coming out of the break – shockingly their 10th turnover of the half – and the Plainfield, New Jersey native would give the Pirates the lead following a transition slam.
With all of the momentum on the home team’s side, Wichita State shut the crowd up and then some. Not their first rodeo, the Shockers reeled off an 8-0 run after Seton Hall took the lead at 55-54 and Conner Frankamp (13 pts) was the X-factor as he personally scored eight-straight including two clutch triples.
On the ropes again, Seton Hall gave themselves a chance to down just four at the under-four and would surge into the lead following back-to-back Rodriguez and Whitehead triples and a slashing Derrick Gordon (8 pts, 3 asts) basket to with 90 ticks remaining.
Seton Hall took their chance and then some but it would take overtime.
Newark native Ish Sanogo (5 pts, 9 rebs) gave Seton Hall a 2-point lead after two clutch free throws but Fred VanVleet brought the game to overtime by sinking two of his own that were followed by a missed Whitehead triple to win with seconds left.
WIth several Shockers in foul trouble entering the extra period, Seton Hall frankly looked the better team after VanVleet opened OT with a three. The Hall scored eight-straight following VanVleet’ shot and another triple from Frankamp wasn’t enough to keep the Shockers alive.
This is Seton Hall’s (9-2) biggest non-conference win in quite a few years and instantly propels them into the national conversation for an at-large bid.