Seton Hall Creighton

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Seton Hall



College Basketball



For teams likes Seton Hall and Creighton, winning the Big East will come down to Villanova getting upset a few times on the road and winning Games like this one. For Creighton, which already has a loss to Seton Hall, getting swept by a team not named Villanova is almost a dagger in mid-January. The Bluejays fell in their two toughest road Games of the season and are coming off a 22-point loss at Xavier, but return home in a Game they need.

Seton Hall would be fine with a loss, but with a home Game against Xavier this weekend, will need to win at least one of them. The last time the Pirates traveled, they lost bad in a 84-64 Game against Marquette. Already with a road win at Butler, this team has shown it can win in tough places, although inconsistency has been a problem.

Creighton gets the edge playing at home and also has the confidence of leading this Game most of the way when these teams met in late December. The Bluejays led by eight points with roughly 10 minutes left and then by one from about the five-minute mark to three minutes before Seton Hall put the Game away. The win was there for the Bluejays, but they failed to Scorein the final 3:37 of the Game.

Looking at the numbers from that last Game, Creighton has the recipe to winning this matchup at home. Martin Krampelj did whatever he wanted en route to 23 points and 10 rebounds, while Marcus Foster and Khyri Thomas did their usual with a combined 27 points, 12 boards and nine assists. The biggest thing in that Game maybe was Creighton shooting only 5-of-25 from deep. That number could easily move up to 10-for-25 in this Game because the Bluejays are a solid team from behind the arc, while the Pirates aren’t that great defensively on the perimeter.

If Foster and Thomas revert back to their averages in this Game, Creighton should lead most of the way, and playing at home should lock down in the final few minutes. Of course, that’s easier said than done. Krampelj again has to win the battle against guys like Angel Delgado and Michael Nzei.

And while it’s reasonable to think Creighton can turn things around at home, Seton Hall is still a team that has legit talent at Four positions. That was seen last meeting when those Four guys all had at least 17 points and combined for 76 of the team’s 90 points. Krampelj may have been great for Creighton, but Delgado is still a beast down low and had his usual double-double with 18 points and 14 boards. Desi Rodriguez (18.2 ppg), the team’s leading scorer, was similarly effective with 23 points and five steals. Throw in guards Khadeen Carrington and Myles Powell, who can both create for themselves, and this team is tough to stop.

But as seen in Seton Hall’s previous road Games, this defense isn’t that good and ranks middle of the pack in most areas and towards the bottom in three-point percentage allowed. That could play a big factor in this Game, especially if Foster and Thomas are hitting their shots this time around. Throw in a Creighton defense that ranks first in the Conference in defensive efficiency and it’ll be hard to back the Pirates. Seton Hall has plenty of talent, but is still lacking defensively and that’s going to cost them in numerous road Games this season.

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