Kevin Willard is now 6-0 after Seton Hall's 78-55 rout of Mount St. Mary's. (Photo courtesy of the New York Post)
Billed as a potential trap game due to the unorthodox style of their opponent, the only trap for Seton Hall tonight was the one set by the Pirates' staggering efficiency.
With only one day of preparation before welcoming reigning Northeast Conference champion Mount St. Mary's to the Prudential Center, Seton Hall proved the short turnaround after a gritty win over George Washington was not a factor, shooting 65 percent from the floor en route to a convincing 78-55 victory over Mount St. Mary's to raise the Pirates' record to 6-0 going into their showdown with New Jersey rival Rutgers Saturday afternoon.
"We had to take Sunday off after George Washington," Kevin Willard revealed after tonight's contest, one in which The Hall never trailed. "So, we only had one day of preparation, but I have a lot of confidence in these guys to understand what we're trying to do."
Against the perplexing "Mayhem" system employed by Mount St. Mary's coach Jamion Christian, the Pirates enjoyed their best shooting night of the season, with each player who scored in the game shooting 50 percent or better from the field to collectively amass Seton Hall's 33-for-51 mark as a team. "We knew they were going to run and press," said Willard of the Mountaineers' game plan. "Our whole thing was (to) break it and attack for layups."
Freshman Khadeen Carrington, whose 16 points led all scorers in a balanced diet of offense, was the model of such efficiency, not missing any of the eight field goals he attempted. "He's starting to get his bounce back," Willard said of his first-year backcourt member, who previously starred at Bishop Loughlin in Brooklyn, and missed the first four weeks of practice due to injury. "He's starting to get a better feel."
Angel Delgado had another productive night in the frontcourt, falling one rebound short of what would have been his second consecutive double-double while pouring in 13 points. Isaiah Whitehead and Sterling Gibbs chipped in with 12 and 11 points, respectively, and Will Miller paced Mount St. Mary's with 13 markers in the losing effort.
With an opportunity to exhale now awaiting Seton Hall, the scene now shifts to their next opponent, but the approach remains the same as the Pirates welcome Rutgers up the New Jersey Turnpike.
"The older guys have played in this game, so they know what it's like," Willard reiterated, "but for the young guys, these guys have played in big games, they've played in the McDonald's All-American game, the Jordan Classic game. They understand what goes into it. We'll prepare for this game just like every other game."