Seton Hall ultimately won its season opener despite struggling with one local opponent that shocked the world in the 2022 NCAA Tournament.
The Pirates face another local opponent that made history and hopes to get another win Saturday afternoon when Fairleigh Dickinson visits South Orange, N.J.
Seton Hall (1-0), which was picked ninth in the Big East’s preseason poll, struggled for portions of their 70-59 win over St. Peter’s on Monday in Newark N.J. Facing a former 15th-seeded team that knocked off Kentucky and Purdue in March 2022, the Pirates made enough plays after halftime to topple the Peacocks.
“Tonight was a good first step for us and a good building block,” Seton Hall coach Shaheen Holloway said. “I’m taking a positive out of this, right? The positive is we’re going to get better. I think this is kind of where I don’t want to be, but if you’re peaking right now, you’re in trouble.”
Among the positives for Holloway was a much more cohesive final 20 minutes for the Pirates, who shot 75 percent (12 of 16), made five 3-pointers and got to the foul line 18 times.
Kadary Richmond led the Pirates with 18 points to go along with seven assists and six rebounds. Al-Amir Dawes and Dre Davis, who added 14 points apiece, joined Richmond in making 13 of 26 shots from the floor.
Fairleigh Dickinson (2-0) will play its third game under new coach Jack Castleberry, who took over when Tobin Anderson parlayed the school’s upset over Purdue as a 16th seed in the NCAA Tournament into succeeding Rick Pitino at Iona.
So far offense is not a problem for the Knights.
Fairleigh Dickinson followed up shooting 47.6 percent in a 92-86 win at Buffalo on Monday by shooting 50.7 percent and hitting a school-record 19 3-pointers in a 107-63 rout of Division III Penn State-Brandywine. Ansley Almonor scored 24 points and Jo’el Emanuel added 13 after recording 24 in the season opener.
“It was a solid showing,” Castleberry said. “We weren’t consistent at times but we didn’t make excuses with the quick turnaround.”
–Field Level Media