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Seton Hall Blows Out St. John’s; Remains on Top of Big East

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Image Credit – Mike Barrera for use with Stream Punk Entertainment

Pre-Game Notes

Well, I expected Seton Hall to come out swinging in this highly anticipated matchup with St.
John’s, but I didn’t quite expect what the Newark crowd (which included former Seton Hall and
Sixers big man, Sammy Dalembert) saw on Tuesday evening. The Seton Hall Pirates led the Red
Storm from beginning to end, and they continue to make a legitimate claim for a Top 25
Before the game started, we received some unfortunate news from the St. John’s locker room.
Coach Pitino was a late scratch for the game last night, as he came down with COVID. Coach
Steve Masiello, who recently spent time at Manhattan, would try to fill Pitino’s shoes for the
On the court, these two teams have shown a lot of promise to start Conference Play. For the
visitors, they just came off a 1-point loss to Creighton but had pulled of victories against
Providence and Villanova. For the home team, the Pirates have been one of the hottest teams
in the country. They’ve won 4 games in a row, three of which came on the road. Needless to
say, the Pirates were excited to be back in front of their home crowd, which was surprisingly full
considering the snow storm in New Jersey.

Fast and Fiery Start

As we’ve seen from this Pirates squad, they have taken on the fiery identity of their head coach.
That was immediately on display last night as they quickly took the lead and pushed the
envelope. In the post-game press conference, Al-Amir Dawes highlighted the readiness to be
physical in this matchup. Although the outside shots weren’t falling early for the Pirates, they
made a living in the paint.
Kadary Richmond set the tone with some quick points and active hands. Next, the Pirates
scored 14 of their first 19 points from the paint, with the rest coming from the charity stripe.
Seton Hall seemed unafraid to test Soriano and company down low, and that would prove to be crucial as the half continued.
We had a tied match at the 4.5-minute mark, 24-24. Then Seton Hall turned it on. The Pirates
would end the half on a 14-point run, and they received a huge boost off the bench from Elijah
Hutchins-Everett. The Austin Peay transfer would end the half with 6 points and 3 boards, and
he would also force a turnover late which got the crowd on their feet. The Pirates then carried
a 38-24 lead into the locker room.

Foot on the Gas

Seton Hall did not get complacent to open the second frame. They kicked off the second half
with another 14-point run, which meant SHU had scored 28 unanswered points between the
two halves! From there, they did not let go of their lead.
St. John’s began to settle into the second half, but it was far from an impressive performance
from the Red Storm. Joel Soriano in particular had himself an off-night, and he would end the
evening with only 6 points and 4 rebounds. Joel is a player who averages 17 points and 10
boards a night. To say that the Pirates contained Mr. Soriano is an understatement.
I mentioned earlier Hutchins-Everett. The Orange, NJ native had himself a game to remember.
He came into the contest averaging 3.2 points and 2.7 boards, and his confidence was on
display at the start of the 2 nd half when he hit a corner three. From there, he continued to make an impact on both ends of the floor, and the big man would end with 14 points and 7 rebounds.
After a run of nail-biting efforts, the Seton Hall Pirates coasted through most of the final 20
minutes, as St. John’s couldn’t get a long enough push to narrow the gap. Furthermore, the
team’s depth and leadership was on display this evening. Kadary Richmond may have opened
the game hot, but he went fairly quiet for majority of the match. As we’ve grown accustomed
to now from this veteran squad, several players on this team can beat you. Al-Amir Dawes
ended the night with 21 points and 3 of 5 from three-point land. Also, the former St. John’s
player, Addae-Wusu, had himself a strong performance. He would finish his night with 16
points, 10 boards, and 5 assists. Off the stat sheet, Dylan’s energy and active hands helped
keep the Pirates’ foot on the gas to close out the convincing win.

What’s Next?

Well, as I just mentioned above, that was a convincing win for the Pirates. They have one more
game left on this week’s schedule, and that is Saturday afternoon when they host the Creighton Blue Jays. If you follow me on Twitter (@Mbarrera1323), you know I’ve highlighted some of Creighton’s losses this year. When they’re shooting under 30% from three, they struggle to find different ways to beat you. We know how deadly they can be from behind the arc, especially Baylor Scheierman, so the perimeter defense for the Pirates will be put to the test. Also, we cannot forget Kalkbrenner down low. Bediako and Hutchins-Everett will need a similar performance that we saw last night against Soriano.
If the Pirates can pull off the win against Creighton, they will certainly be ranked by Monday
morning. When asked about their mentality in the post-game press conference, Al-Amir Dawes
made it crystal clear on how this team embraces the underdog role. You can check out his full
response in my video from yesterday evening. ‘

For St. John’s, they’ve now lost two in a row and have some question marks into the team’s
health. As of now, it is uncertain when Coach Pitino will come back (they’re hopeful for the
weekend), and of course you have to worry about any players that could feel sick. Their next
matchup is at home against Marquette, who has also been dealing with their own absences.
Not only has Ross been sidelined recently, but Sean Jones just suffered a torn ACL in the game
against Butler. The Golden Eagles were able to beat Villanova by 13 on Monday night, and we’ll
see if St. John’s will be able to separate themselves from Marquette in the Big East Standings.

  • Mike Barrera (Mbarrera1323 on Twitter/X): Covering the Philadelphia Union of MLS and the Big
    East Conference for NCAAB.

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