Tuesday, January 5, 2016

DePaul 86, Seton Hall 74: Ray Floriani's Tempo-Free Analysis

DePaul huddles after their victory at Seton Hall. (Photo courtesy of Ray Floriani)

South Orange, NJ -­ Women’s basketball ‘guru’ Mel Greenberg light-heartedly termed Seton Hall, (coach Tony Bozzella) Villanova, (Harry Perretta) DePaul, (Doug Bruno) and St. John’s, (Joe Tartamella) the Big East ‘Italian Division.’ The four would make an entertaining and competitive group, especially with postgame comments. At any rate, DePaul visited Seton Hall in a battle of conference unbeatens at historic Walsh Gymnasium.

First Quarter: Seton Hall was hitting the glass hard early and looking to get out in transition. Defensively, 6-­3 Tiffany Jones drew the starting assignment to guard DePaul standout Megan Podkowa. The Pirates led 8­-7 after the first four minutes. At this point, Podkowa had not taken a shot, rather content to set high post screens, but she would be heard from. Count on it. DePaul is far from a one-player attack, as Chanise Jenkins (15.1 ppg) shows by burying two three-pointers.

End Of First Quarter: DePaul 21, Seton Hall 16

Second Quarter: DePaul has been effective from the perimeter, not just on threes, as they took mid-range shots as well, opening an eight-point lead early in the quarter. Doug Brunos club has defense on its mind as well. Brooke Schulte, a junior guard, did a nice job on Seton Hall’s Tabatha Richardson-Smith. The Blue Demons were on fire, with six of their first seven field goals this quarter coming outside the paint as their lead reached 17 points.

Halftime: DePaul 50, Seton Hall 26

Possessions: DePaul 40, Seton Hall 38

Offensive Efficiency: DePaul 125, Seton Hall 68

Third Quarter: The halftime stats confirmed my shot chart: Megan Podkowa of DePaul did not attempt a shot the first half. Still, her presence was felt, doing things that do not make their way onto the stat sheet. Her first shot attempt came with 7:43 left in the quarter, a nothing-but-net three-pointer that increased the Blue Demon lead to 29. Seton Hall's offense began to pick up near the end of the quarter. Transition opportunities produced scores, but the Pirates were in need of stops. Some full court pressure forced a few turnovers, cutting into the deficit.

End Of Third Quarter: DePaul 66, Seton Hall 48

Fourth Quarter: Seton Hall realized the clock was an enemy, running every opportunity and continuing to pressure defensively. Shakena Richardson’s transition layup with a few ticks under eight minutes to play brought the deficit to a very manageable 10 points. The Hall run continued, making it a three-possession game with just under five minutes to play. Ashton Millender had eight points for DePaul, playing a significant part in the outcome. Her two treys proved to be daggers that ended any Pirate chances of a comeback victory.

Final: DePaul 86, Seton Hall 74

Possessions: DePaul 81, Seton Hall 79

Offensive Efficiency: DePaul 106, Seton Hall 94

Four Factors:
eFG Percentage: DePaul 57, Seton Hall 47
Free Throw Rate: DePaul 22, Seton Hall 17
Offensive Rebound Percentage: DePaul 26, Seton Hall 33

Turnover Rate: DePaul 19, Seton Hall 20

Leading Scorers and Effectiveness Factors:
DePaul: Chanise Jenkins (21 points, EF: 29)

Seton Hall: Aleesha Powell (23 points, EF: 29)

What DePaul did well: Play a great first half. The Blue Demons shot 57 percent from the floor, 50 percent from three-point range, and logged an outstanding 125 offensive efficiency in the opening stanza. Down the stretch, Seton Hall made a huge run to make it a three-possession game. As they did Sunday against St. John’s, the Blue Demons weathered the run, made the plays, and sealed the victory.

What Seton Hall did well: The Pirates hit the boards, leading in offensive rebound percentage, and in raw numbers with a 43­-38 total. Seton Hall showed a lot of heart, coming back from a 32-point third quarter deficit to have a chance midway through the fourth quarter.

Junior guard Jessica January posted DePaul’s first triple-double since 1989. January scored 13 points, pulled down 10 rebounds, and had 10 assists. Her effectiveness factor was 33 in 33 minutes, for an outstanding 1.00 EF per minute. DePaul coach Doug Bruno was the mentor when this feat last happened 27 years ago, and had this to say: “I put more stock in a triple-double. A big guy can get 10 rebounds and is supposed to. Now if the big scores 11, you have a double-double. With the triple, you need double figures in steals, assists or blocks, something more than scoring and/or rebounding.”

Seton Hall led 40-­30 in points in the paint, no surprise with DePaul burying ten three-pointers. (10-of-24 ,for 41.7 percent) Megan Podkowa, who had an outstanding game at St. John’s, scored nine points with seven rebounds and an effectiveness factor of 17. Tiffany Jones of Seton Hall scored 14 points with a game-high 16 boards. Her EF was 28, due to five turnovers.

DePaul coach Doug Bruno is big on tempo-free numbers. Bruno uses the Dean Smith formula commonly used today for plays, which is broken down as follows:

PPP (points per possession) = FGA + (.5 * FTSA) + TO/PTS

Using that formula, DePaul had 92 plays, while Seton Hall had 93.
Points per possession: DePaul 0.94, Seton Hall 0.80

DePaul improves to 11-­5, (3­-0 Big East) while Seton Hall falls to 3­-1 in conference and 13­-2 overall.

Final Thoughts
“At halftime, I told the team we are much better than we played. Just play the way we can. When they (DePaul) got it from 24 to 32 (ahead) early in the third quarter, that’s when we lost it. We showed a lot of heart and determination, but we lost the game early in the third quarter.” -­ Seton Hall coach Tony Bozzella

“The team talked among themselves about the St. John’s game. (when Seton Hall was coming back) I never mentioned that game. It is behind us. What I want is execution and just to move forward.”­ - DePaul coach Doug Bruno

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