Villanova wins at Seton Hall, gets back in Big East race

NEWARK, N.J. – Since the beginning of the Kevin Willard era, Seton Hall has been getting better but no night was set up to be better than Wednesday’s game against Villanova. The Pirates were celebrating Myles Powell, who will graduate this year and will go down as one of the best players in program history. On top of celebrating Powell, the Pirates also were hoping to celebrate an outright Big East title, as beating Villanova would have given them the outright Big East title. With a perfect storybook finish for the Pirates in store, Villanova spoiled the Pirates’ party by beating them on Myles Powell senior night. 

The Wildcats were in control for most of this game but Seton Hall wasn’t going to make it easy for them to walk away with the win. With 4:30 on the clock and the Wildcats lead at 3, Justin Moore hit a big-time three-pointer which was the start of a 7-0 run that eventually pushed the Wildcats lead to 10. Seton Hall made its rally and after a series of missed free throws, Powell had a shot to tie but it was too long. While Villanova again let the Pirates have one more opportunity thanks to missed free throws, Quincy McKnight wasn’t able to complete a pass fast-enough for a potential buzzer-beater. Saddiq Bey led the Wildcats with 20 in this game, while Justin Moore and Jermaine Samuels both had 19. For Seton Hall, Sandro Mamukelashvili led the team with 20 points and 10 rebounds, while Powell was limited to just 14. 

For Powell, his senior night went a little bit worse than he expected but there are still good things to take away despite the loss. “This one was rough,” Powell said postgame. “My last time here. I didn’t go out the way we wanted to but we fought. We fought until we saw zeros on that clock.” 

Seton Hall still does controls who wins the Big East regular-season title. With a win on Saturday at Creighton, they will win the Big East regular-season title outright with a win. With a loss, the Pirates will share the Big East regular-season title with Creighton and maybe Villanova, who will have to win at Georgetown to have a chance at the conference title. 

Bracketology Effect: Despite the loss, Seton Hall remains on the two-line, although it does move from being the #6 overall team to the #8 overall team. Villanova also doesn’t move up a seed line but does move up to the #9 overall seed. Betting Effect: Villanova +3.5, Over 140

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