NEWARK, NJ – Absolutely nothing went as planned for the Seton Hall men’s basketball team on Sunday afternoon. A little over one week after blowing a last minute lead to Oklahoma, the Pirates were devastated by in-state rival Fairleigh Dickinson, 58-54, at Prudential Center.
The Hall had no answer for Sidney Sanders Jr. The senior guard was one rebound and one assist shy of a triple-double, leading all scorers with 23 points in FDU’s third win of the year.
“I don’t know if anything went right for us today,” Seton Hall head coach Kevin Willard said. “We had three good days of practice leading up to this, watched a lot of film, prepared for them a lot. We came out and played like were in quick sand.”
Led by Sanders, FDU pummeled the Pirates, beating Seton Hall in every major statistical category, but more importantly, stalling the Hall’s offense throughout the contest.
The Pirates shot just 37.7 percent, while only two players, Fuquan Edwin (Paterson, N.J.) and Brian Oliver (Glassboro, N.J.), reached double-figures in points. Edwin led the team with 16 points, while Oliver finished with 12, all from behind the arch.
“Our pace was terrible,” Willard said. “Our effort wasn’t bad on the defensive end. Our pace was bad. We kind of just got standing around, watching people dribble. We have a tendency of doing that every once in a while.”
Despite the troublesome play, the Pirates had a chance to win the game late. Trailing by one after Jaren Sina hit a 3-pointer with 1:14 to play, the Hall failed to score on their final two possessions. Brandon Mobley missed a layup to take the lead with 22 seconds, then Sterling Gibbs (Scotch Plains, N.J.) squandered a deep ball.
Gibbs, who is in his first year with the Pirates after transferring from Texas, has struggled in two straight games, going 0-for-10 from the field dating back to the Hall’s win over Virginia Tech. The Seton Hall Prep product was visibly frustrated following the game.
“Obviously we lost to a team we felt we should have beat,” Gibbs said. “They came out and outplayed us. We just got to keep moving along. It’s a long season.”
Seton Hall can’t mull over the loss for too long. They host LIU-Brooklyn on Thursday at Prudential Center. Tip-off is scheduled for 7 p.m.