clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Big second half in 67-66 win over Creighton shows that Seton Hall still has life

New, 12 comments

Senior Haralds Karlis tied his career-high and freshman Angel Delgado had a big second half in Seton Hall's win.

Jim O'Connor-USA TODAY Sports

NEWARK - He was noticeably distraught in the first half including sitting on the Seton Hall bench as his team huddled during a media timeout, but freshman forward Angel Delgado turned out to be one of two heroes that helped the Pirates end a six-game losing streak in a dramatic 67-66 victory over Creighton.

Delgado would score all 13 of his points and pull down eight of his 11 rebounds after the half including the go-ahead putback with 14 seconds to play. Delgado was helped by senior wing Haralds Karlis, who tied a career-high with 14 points and was instrumental in two runs for the Pirates.

"He played terrific, he played under control, gave us great energy," said Seton Hall head coach Kevin Willard of Karlis. "There was nothing about his game that I didn't like."

"That's the best feeling in the world," said Karlis of the crowd chanting his name in the second half. "This game is probably the best game I've ever played in my life."

Evidence of two teams headed in opposite directions at the time, Creighton got off to a commanding start that silenced the 5,000-plus at Prudential Center. Looking well drilled on offense, the Bluejays exhibited stellar off-ball movement and weren't afraid to share the rock, resulting in a 23-9 push that ran halfway through the first period and featured nine assists on 13 first half buckets.

A major factor in Creighton's offense of late, 7-foot center Geoffrey Groselle (11 pts, 8 rebs, 2 blks) set the tone early by scoring Creighton's first two buckets in the paint over Angel Delgado, who sat for a long stretch in the first half and looked very upset on Seton Hall's bench after being subbed out following an offensive foul.

Following the under-eight media timeout, Seton Hall was sparked by the hard-nosed, energetic play of Haralds Karlis and mounted an 11-2 run that cut their deficit to just five at 25-20, but quickly conceded nine Creighton points to go into the half trailing by ten, 34-24.

A lackluster first half provoked Kevin Willard to really dig into his team during the break.

"I was so mad at halftime, this is the first time I've actually yelled at this group, it really is. It's the first time I've gotten angry at them and they've heard the other side of me [...] I had had it at halftime, I told them all ‘you guys are nuts, you played harder yesterday [in practice] than you're doing now. You've got 20 minutes to figure it out' and I was proud of the way they came out."

"Coach Willard said some not-so-nice words," confirmed Pirate senior Brandon Mobley. "Sometimes thats what it takes. Everybody got the message, clearly."

After sitting for the final eight minutes of the first half in which he was held scoreless, Angel Delgado started the second half along with Karlis and looked to be back on track by spearheading a major Seton Hall run. Delgado scored 11 of Seton Hall's first 21 points out of the locker room and was key in erasing Creighton's lead after a Khadeen Carrington (13 pts, 5 rebs) three-ball tied the game at 55 just prior to the under-eight timeout.

"Theres a lot of good freshmen [in this conference], I've watched them all and I don't know if anyone has had a bigger impact that Angel has had."

Carrington's timely score to knot the game up wasn't his only of afternoon. The freshman guard willed a pair of crunch-time buckets driving to the rim with Creighton leading 65-59 and under three to play. The late outburst gave Seton Hall the extra energy they needed and set up a dramatic finish.

Seemingly an inverse of the first meeting between the two teams, Austin Chatman's 22nd and 23rd points on a clutch go-ahead jumper with 30 seconds to play left Seton Hall with the ball, down one and the shot clock off.

Isaiah Whitehead (8 pts, 7 asts) drove to the paint, conjuring his patented spin move in the lane, but missed a wild attempt that who else but Angel Delgado put back on the weak side.

Just like in the first matchup, Creighton had a chance to win the game on their last possession but James Milliken missed a mid-range jumper and a wild scramble ensued that didn't yield any decent chances and a game-ending Haralds Karlis rebound.

The win snapped a six-game Seton Hall (16-12, 6-10) losing streak and hands the Pirates a regular season sweep of Creighton (13-16, 4-12), who they may meet in the first round of the Big East Tournament.

"It shows that we've still got life in us. It's not over, it's not over by a long shot," said Brandon Mobley of the win. "We know that we can still make a push."