Starting the game with nearly a full roster of healthy bodies for the first time in over a month, Seton Hall dismissed the Lafayette Leopards 90-58 on campus in South Orange, Friday night. Senior center Aaron Geramipoor was the only player unable to take part in the festivities, as the Pirates rolled out Fuquan Edwin, Patrik Auda and Sterling Gibbs for the first time since November 22nd against Oklahoma. While the Pirates made easy work of their opponent, fans had to temper their excitement after witnessing Eugene Teague (18PTS/11REB) suffer a hard fall that forced him to leave on a stretcher early in the second half.
Seton Hall's superior athleticism and determination to feed Eugene Teague made for what appeared to be the perfect tune-up before Big East play is set to begin on New Year's eve. Teague (7), Brandon Mobley (5) and Brian Oliver (6) bullied the undersized Leopards on the glass in the first half, setting the way for Seton Hall to run Lafayette out of the building. Before fans and students could finish filing in, the Pirates hand wrapped a Christmas present of their own, complete with a shiny maroon-bow.
In a move rarely seen in Divison-1 basketball, it appeared Kevin Willard attempted to call off the frantic pace of his offense with Seton Hall leading 32-7 with 6 minutes remaining in the half. If only Fran O'Hanlon accepted Willard's good faith offering. For whatever reason, trailing by THIRTY points in the first half, the Leopards refused to concede the track meet as they continuously rushed the ball down the court, resulting in missed field goal attempts and low-percentage shots. In result, the Pirates continued to defend aggressively while extending their lead to a 47-15 mark at the intermission.
Six minutes into the second half, Eugene Teague went airborne for a rebound attempt and fell extremely hard, hitting his neck/head and apparently suffered whiplash according to the FS1 booth. A stretcher was immediately called for Teague and the Seton Hall staff appeared to administer oxygen at one point. Just minutes after leaving the court, the Fox Sports booth informed viewers that Teague did not have a neck injury and was only being evaluated for a concussion.
Obviously, that's as good of news as anyone could have hoped for after witnessing the 14-minute sequence on television, or in person. In these situations, basketball and Teague's impact on Seton Hall's depth going forward is merely a secondary concern that serves no purpose in addressing at the moment. Please get well soon, Eugene. It also should be noted of the great job by the Seton Hall medical staff in attending to Teague and taking the appropriate precautions. Well done, guys.
Seton Hall is next in action with a matinee on New Year's eve as they hit the road and open up conference play against the Providence Friars.