Seton Hall pulls off major upset over No.7 Maryland, 52-48Date: December 20, 2019
By: Liam Plate
Seton Hall (7-4 Overall) earned their first signature win of the season and of their strong non-conference schedule as they topped No. 7 Maryland (10-2 Overall) by a score of 52-48. The game was not as close from the jump as Seton Hall started to control the game early.
In the first half, it was all Seton Hall. The Pirates had efficient ball movement on offense and had a field day in the paint with eight blocks in total throughout the half. Romaro Gill played extremely well for the Pirates as he scored six points and racked of five out of the eight blocks the Pirates had in the half.
The Hall also had stellar guard play from their starting guards Quincy McKnight and Anthony Nelson. Nelson notched seven points, while McKnight scored five points and both guards had only three turnovers between the two of them throughout the half.
On the Maryland side, the Terrapins were led by Anthony Cowan who had eight points, but they struggled with taking care of the ball as they committed ten turnovers throughout the half. A bright spot for Maryland was that they grabbed 20 rebounds compared to Seton Hall’s 15 boards. The Pirates led by nine points at the end of the half with the score being 27-18.
The second half was played in much closer quarters. While Seton Hall was in control still in the beginning of the second half, Maryland came alive towards the end making it a much closer game. On the Maryland side, the Terrapins had several more players step up on the offensive side of the ball as Cowan scored another eight points, Aaron Wiggins chipped in nine, and Jalen Smith notched eight.
For the Pirates, it was McKnight who came up big once again. He scored 12 points, grabbed five boards, handed out three assists, and went 4/4 from the free throw line. Seton Hall’s defense came up big down the stretch as they were able to throw Maryland off balance and apply tremendous amounts of pressure on the Terrapins. It was a game of foul shots towards of the game and Seton Hall was able to keep their lead throughout the end of the second half by going 6/10 from the free throw line.
Seton Hall was able to keep their composure on both sides of the floor to secure the 52-48 victory. Despite being outrebounded by the Terrapins 42-33, the Pirates were able to dominate on the defensive side of the floor with the two headed monster of Gill and Ike Obiagu underneath and the strong guard play from McKnight and Nelson.
Head coach Kevin Willard emphasized the importance of Nelson and McKnight’s play on defense and how they were able to help stop Maryland when he said, “I think switching up defense and keeping them off balance. I think that was key. Q and Nelson were pivotal in keeping them off balance.”
Another bright spot for the Pirates was how Jared Rhoden was able to quietly grab twelve boards throughout the game despite being a shorter player for the power forward position. “I don’t care if I’m 6-foot-6, I’m going to get as many rebounds as I can get” Rhoden said after the game.
Without Sandro Mamukelashvili and Myles Powell, the Pirates stepped up big and took down the No. 7 Maryland Terrapins. This win is a big boost for the team’s morale and is a nice touch to their early tournament resume.
Seton Hall will wrap up their non-conference season on Sunday when Prairie View A&M comes to town on Sunday for a 4:30 p.m. tip-off time. 89.5 FM WSOU will have coverage from that game at the Prudential Center with pre-game coverage starting at 4:15 p.m.
Liam Plate can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.