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Can Seton Hall Upset Villanova?

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NEW YORK CITY, N.Y. – The Seton Hall Pirates (24-8) have had a great season, and should be in the field of play for the NCAA Tournament. The Pirates came into the Big East Tournament as a #3 seed with an impressive 12-6 record in Big East Conference games.

Seton Hall has gotten strong production from their sophomore guards Isaiah Whitehead and Khadeen Carrington. Whitehead and Carrington have scored 20 or more points in both games during this Big East Tournament.

(Credit: Barry Holmes) Whitehead has done it all, including shooting 19 of 24 from the charity stripe.

(Credit: Barry Holmes) Whitehead has done it all, including shooting 19 of 24 from the charity stripe.

Whitehead has emerged as a natural leader, and has made some athletic finishes at the rim. The ability to create quality scoring opportunities for other teammates, is what makes Whitehead really dangerous. Carrington has proven to be a deadly shooter, yet streaky throughout the tournament. However, both guards have not shyed away from the big shot and playing good defense. Whitehead had a critical help side block with :18 seconds left of the Quarterfinal game against the Creighton Blue Jays, to save the game and secure a 81-73 win.

The big thing that the Villanova Wildcats have shown that they like to do, is that they like to shoot the three ball. Seton Hall is an excellent defensive rebounding team, and is ranked 1st in the Big East in rebounding. The Pirates also defend the three point line well, with their long athletic players. Seton Hall should be able to get stops and grab the rebounds. This will be crucial late down the stretch, and has been the reason Seton Hall has been able to hold off two comebacks from Creighton and Xavier in the tournament.

(Credit: Barry Holmes) The Pirates great defense has led to easy opportunities.

(Credit: Barry Holmes) The Pirates great defense has led to easy opportunities.

Make no mistakes, the fans in attendance Saturday afternoon will be in for a treat. However, Seton Hall’s excellent guard play and defense will be the recipe for an upset over Villanova. Especially if the Pirate forwards can get established offensively in the paint, it will be a long night for the Wildcats.

Prediction:

  • Whitehead has his biggest scoring output of the tournament with 32 points, and leads Seton Hall to a 68-62 win over Villanova.

Barry Holmes is a Senior Writer for PureSportsNY.com. Follow him on Twitter @BHO732

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