Tuesday, February 14, 2012
W2W4: Seton Hall vs. St. John's
By Kieran Darcy
Here are three things to watch for when Seton Hall (17-8, 6-7 Big East) hosts St. John's (10-15, 4-9 Big East) on Tuesday night at the Prudential Center in Newark, N.J.
Tip-off is at 7 p.m., and you can watch the game locally on SNY, or via ESPN3.
UP AND DOWN: Seton Hall has re-energized its pursuit of the school's first NCAA tournament bid since 2006 with back-to-back wins against Rutgers and Pittsburgh -- before that, the Pirates had lost six straight games, following a 15-2 start.
The momentum is clearly on Seton Hall's side -- we'll see if St. John's can deliver another spirited effort on the road, just two days after leaving it all on the court against the Hoyas at the Verizon Center. The danger of a letdown certainly looms here for the shorthanded Red Storm.
GUARD PLAY: Keep an eye on a couple of freshman shooting guards in this game -- Aaron Cosby for Seton Hall, D'Angelo Harrison for St. John's.
Cosby is the less heralded of the two, but is coming off a career-high 19 points in the Hall's 73-66 win over Pitt on Sunday, knocking down five of his nine 3-point attempts. If Cosby (8.2 ppg), who has been in double figures nine times in 25 games thus far, can emerge as a more reliable fourth scorer behind point guard Jordan Theodore (15.8 ppg, 6.7 apg), power forward Herb Pope (15.9 ppg, 10.5 rpg) and swingman Fuquan Edwin (13.0 ppg, 6.8 rpg), the Pirates become a much more difficult team to handle.
Harrison, meanwhile, now leads St. John's in scoring at 16.7 points per game, and is beginning to see teams employ a box-and-1 defense against him to try to slow him down. We'll see how Seton Hall coach Kevin Willard tries to stop him on Tuesday night.
ON THE INSIDE: Pope and 6-foot-9 freshman forward Brandon Mobley (4.2 ppg, 4.4 rpg) are going to be a handful for undersized St. John's in the paint and on the glass. Moe Harkless (15.6 ppg, 8.4 rpg) will have to come up big for St. John's, both scoring and rebounding. And even though he comes off the bench now, God'sgift Achiuwa could be a very important player in this game.
Achiuwa has been erratic in terms of his production, and scored just two points against Georgetown on Sunday. But every once in a while he seems to come up with a big performance out of the blue, such as his 15 points in 18 minutes against DePaul on Feb. 1.