Pirates blast MU in second half to complete season sweep

Late 16-4 run puts Seton Hall in conference top-4, Golden Eagles lagging

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Pirates blast MU in second half to complete season sweep

Photo courtesy of Maggie Bean/Marquette Athletics

Photo courtesy of Maggie Bean/Marquette Athletics

Photo by Maggie Bean

Photo courtesy of Maggie Bean/Marquette Athletics

Photo by Maggie Bean

Photo by Maggie Bean

Photo courtesy of Maggie Bean/Marquette Athletics

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Marquette’s roller coaster season took another downward turn Wednesday night with a 79-62 loss to Seton Hall.

After trailing by just three points at halftime, the Golden Eagles had another epic second half collapse. A 16-4 Pirates run, including four three-pointers in five possessions, capped the onslaught.

Seton Hall forward Angel Delgado notched his second double-double in as many games against the Golden Eagles this season, following up his 11 point, 11 rebound performance Dec. 30 with 19 points and 13 rebounds Wednesday night. Guard Isaiah Whitehead added a game-high 21 points with eight assists and six rebounds.

Henry Ellenson recorded his 14th double-double of the season with 10 points and 10 rebounds, though he shot just 3-for-9 from the field and was locked down by Seton Hall’s Ismael Sanogo for much of the game. It was a disappointing turnaround from his 32-point, 10-rebound and six-block performance Saturday against Butler.

The Golden Eagles shot just 40.7 percent from the field and 26.3 percent from three-point range after shooting 52.2 percent and 58.8 percent in those respective categories last game.

Luke Fischer had a nice bounce-back from a scoreless performance against Butler. He had 11 points and four rebounds in the first half, taking advantage of the smaller Delgado in the paint. Fischer’s hook shot has noticeably improved from earlier in the season as he’s grown confident in the shot. He finished with 16 points, six rebounds and two blocks.

Seton Hall held a slim lead at halftime due in part to a close 20-19 rebound advantage in their favor. It was still a three-point Pirates lead with 10:30 left to play in regulation before they went on the three-point shooting barrage.

Noted Marquette basketball blog Paint Touches pointed out that Seton Hall outscored Marquette 27-13 in the final 10:30 of the Dec. 30 matchup. On Wednesday, the Pirates closed on a 28-13 run in that same timeframe.

Wednesday’s disappointing result means the Golden Eagles have little wiggle room for the remainder of the season. The team can ill afford to lose more than two games the rest of the season with games against Xavier, Villanova and Georgetown left on the schedule.

Saturday’s game at No. 6 Xavier may be an opportunity to steal an unexpected victory. The Musketeers were taken to the wire by conference bottom-feeder St. John’s Wednesday night at home, winning 90-83. Marquette kept Xavier within double-digits in a Jan. 16 matchup in Milwaukee. If the Golden Eagles can catch Xavier on their heels, they could carry serious momentum into another matchup against a ranked team – Providence – on Wednesday. Not to mention, the Jan. 5 game in Rhode Island was a sign that the Henry Ellenson versus Kris Dunn rematch is a must-watch.

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