Three Thoughts, Three Quotes: No. 20 Seton Hall stunned by Rhode Island

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Jared Terrell scored 32 points including a go-ahead floater with seconds on the clock as Rhode Island shocked No. 20 Seton Hall 75-74 in Brooklyn.

Both sides did well to entertain during the first half and Myles Powell (21p, 5r) was at the forefront, scoring 18 of his 21 including a barrage of threes.

But it was a leaky Seton Hall defense that was to blame as Rhode Island would score 54, a handful of which came on the fast break.

Angel Delgado (18p, 14r) nearly had a double-double in the second half alone and Ish Sanogo (4p, 4r) stepped up to hold the Rams to just 21 points after the break, but it was the 20th and 21st points that sunk the Pirates’ ship.

Jared Terrell lowered his shoulder to get past Desi Rodriguez (12p) before banking in a floater from the near corner with four seconds left. Khadeen Carrington (12p, 2a) then unsuccessfully tried to drive the length of the court to pick up a foul in the paint as Kevin Willard allowed his guys to play without taking a timeout.

My thoughts and quotes from Willard’s radio interview with AM 970 below.

Three thoughts

This result throws a wrench into Seton Hall’s non-conference schedule. Obviously a loss hurts, but Vanderbilt (2-3) is an unknown commodity and likely won’t turn out to be a top-50 win. That’s a lot different than a win and a game against Virginia, but there’s still opportunities in Louisville and Texas Tech.

The first half defense was forgettable. Maybe it’s better when the team starts slow offensively if the trade off is giving up 54 points (Willard: “To give up 54 points, it’s crazy.”). Rhode Island hit four of their first five threes to boost their confidence, but all but one of them were wide open looks including a down screen that Seton Hall didn’t fight through at all. The Rams shot 60-percent from the field and 78-percent from the perimeter in the first half.

Lack of a point guard reared its head tonight. It’s not a direct criticism of Khadeen Carrington, but I was wondering when not having a pure point guard who isn’t a freshman was going to hurt. Desi Rodriguez and Angel Delgado combined for six of the Hall’s first seven turnovers and the lack of initiating more plays through a lead guard hurt a team with just nine assists on the night. Rodriguez’ drive and turnover late in the second half was indicative of this flaw. Willard lamented post-game about not having Jordan Walker available (thumb ligament) as he said he gives a change of pace compared to Carrington and Eron Gordon.

Three quotes

On his decision not to call a timeout for a final shot: “Sometimes after a team hits a tough one, you can get out and go and try to create. When they’re not as organized you can get a foul … Sometimes you call timeouts in that situation. With that less of time, you attack and try to get something going toward the rim.”

On Ish Sanogo playing a good game, especially the second half: “I still don’t think he is playing at the level he can defensively, all the time. He’s got to be a little more active. He has to be a guy that steps up our defensive intensity. That’s something I’ve got to look at going forward. From a defensive intensity standpoint, what we can do as teams go at us, I need to switch Mike [Nzei] and Ish to cover Angel [Delgado] a little more.”

On having just nine assists: “That’s what I was really disappointed in. That’s not how we’ve been playing. We’ve been passing the basketball. We were putting our head down tonight. Everybody. I wish I could say it was one person, but it was everyone.”


On Delgado’s free throws and how he is worse down the stretch of games: “Especially this time of the year, he’s not quite in great game shape and that’s one reason his free throw percentage goes up as the year goes on is that he’s getting better and better and in game shape. He’s capable of making them. He’s got to make them.”

  • Dave Popkin was asking if Willard was happy with Delgado’s bounce back game and got semi cut off

  • Andrew Herbst

    Tough loss tonight. Unfortunately our warts from last year came back to haunt us with the missed free throws and turnovers. Hopefully we can learn from this and bounce back tomorrow night. Better to have these kind of losses now.

    • slats33

      I respect your omnipresent optimism, but this is a really bad time for a loss like this.

      • Andrew Herbst

        I just hope we can just use loss as motivation and be able to put it behind us

      • Peter

        There is no such thing as a bad loss in November…

  • LBP

    Not calling a TO with 5 secs left may have been the only Coaching decision I agreed with done by our Staff- the Failure to properly defend the one Player Hurley was going to have shoot is mind boggling combined with using a TO to set up at least one set play in the last 3 minutes- this Team can not revert to street ball at Game’s end.

  • cali jack

    Superior competition reduces hype to reality.KC is not a hi D1 PG particularly at crunch time.He’s a great SG.EG is not a PG.Walker is our only PG.MP is a great SG.DR is a great SF or PF.MN and IS are not hi D1 starters.They are great off the bench.AD is a great college center.He needs to touch the ball most every time down.He needs to be more demanding of the ball and KW needs to insist his PG get him the ball.The starting five should be Walker (when healthy)Carrington,Powell,Rodriguez and Delgado.Mamu,Nzei,Sanogo,Cale and Gordon off the bench.

  • slats33

    Missed free throws and bad coaching again. Formula for a bad loss against a lesser team. Marquette and Providence do more with their talented kids. Rhode Island too, evidently. Pirates failed their first test. They don’t belong in the top 25.

  • Louie Dee

    I was at the game and KC looked so out of breath. Not sure what that was about?

    I’ve been to a lot of games the last 3 years and I’ve never seen the team play this bad defensively.

  • PadrePirate

    Two things in addition to what’s already been said below:
    – The TO’s to A’s ratio was totally unacceptable and demonstrates that PG problem is still a problem.
    – The 1H slumps are becoming chronic. KW’s massive, mid-half substitutions have been questioned before. Something about their rotation patterns just doesn’t seem to work.

    • cali jack

      I don’t think theres any question about KW being out coached by DH last night.

  • Peter

    This loss will actually be a good thing. Think back to 1990 when Seton Hall lost to Fordham at Fordham in November and went on to the Final 8. This team needed to learn a little humility. After two straight 1st round NCAA losses, this team should not be ranked in the Top 20. How you play in November is not relevant. How you play in February & March is. This game will teach the players to not believe their own hype.

  • Ardy

    This loss was very disappointing. The teams were very closely matched and it was evident that the game would be decided by mental errors. This is the same thing from last year. You have the Powell kid score 18 in the 1H and they stop going to him. SH shut down their hot scorer.KW even mentioned it in his interview that they( for what reason) stop looking for Powell in the 2nd half. He only had 3 shots in the 2nd half and one was a made 3pointer.Another basket could have won the game for us. KW mentioned that Powell is to unselfish, maybe others should get on the same page. RI kept going to Terrell and he kept them in the game. RI recognized the separation and capitalized on it. Seems like age may not equate to maturity.

    • Louie Dee

      Yea, I was at the game scratching my head asking myself why isn’t KC passing the ball to MP. The seniors might be too worried about their stats than winning the game.

  • VinBick

    There is no excuse for the poor play in Brooklyn yesterday. Winnable game lost with poor defense, poor passing, and horrible one-on-one play without making extra passes to open players. Hurley’s kids played with passion and determination. They out hustled throughout the game to defeat the better Hall team.

    Maybe our guys now know that being a ranked team means nothing without producing on every play at both ends of the court. A Big East team would have beaten the Pirates by 20 yesterday with such poor effort. Gut check time.

    Who will show up to face a Vandy team that was humiliated yesterday?

  • Ardy

    It’s time for the Hall to stop playing consolation games.

  • Ryan Kelly

    Don’t care who you play it’s hard to win when you give up 54 points on 61% shooting for the first 20 mins. Defense was much better in the second half only allowing 21 points. As every loss is disappointing. As a coach there are always things to identify to build on. Second half was by far he best defense they played all year. As is the m.o. with Willard’s teams early in the season they don’t put together a full 40 mins.

  • fouline

    Just because you might be ranked #20 doesn’t mean you are #20. You have to play like a #20.

  • Ardy

    I think it would be hard for any team to get in their rhythm when you sub in 4 cold players into a already heated game at one time instead of one or two at a time. We know KW finally has a bench and now he can sub strategically.

  • PadrePirate

    A bit early to talk of “must” wins, but a W over Vandy and then taking 2 of 3 from Lville, TTech, and VCU seems pretty darn important, given that the rest of the OOC features cupcakes.

  • regularJoe2

    I was at the game so I did not see the replay. But the backcourt violation with 22 seconds left seemed dubious at best on the ball Ish flung from behind URIs backboard. Agree that they played really poorly, but that call seemed questionable.

  • z06

    I saw this game comming after beating 4 cupcakes they have a rough time with good caliber Big East kind of team,but saying all that they should have one this by making couple more foul shots this will happen more this year.

  • LBP

    Good lunch pail win -tons to work on but Team played hard