The Student News Site of Villanova University

The Villanovan

The Villanovan

The Villanovan

Villanova Routs Seton Hall, 80–54 at WFC

Courtesy of Villanova Athletics
Sophomore guard Brendan Hausen set a new season high of 17 points against Seton Hall on Sunday, Feb. 11.

On Sunday, Feb. 11, Villanova defeated Seton Hall, 80-54 at the Wells Fargo Center. The Wildcats added their eighth straight win in their history against the Pirates. 

The win leaves Villanova with an overall record of 13–11 and moves its conference record to 6–7.

Coming into the game third in the Big East, Seton Hall was looking to improve their record for a tournament run while Villanova was looking to keep their overall record above 0.500. 

Leading the ‘Cats with 18 points was redshirt senior forward Eric Dixon, followed closely by sophomore guard Brendan Hausen. After coming off his Big East season high of 15 points against Xavier, Hausen set a new high of 17 against Seton Hall, going 5–8 for three-pointers. 

“Credit to Coach [Neptune] and the coaches for getting me to those spots and credit to my teammates for finding me,” Hausen said. “I’ve just been taking it one day at a time, playing off my shots, just taking what the game gives.” 

Senior guard TJ Bamba scored 14 points on the day. Sophomore guard Mark Armstrong also entered double-digits, contributing 12 points.

The game started off strong for Villanova. All of the starting five shared the wealth for the beginning minutes of the game, with four different Wildcats scoring. In addition, their defensive stops led the ‘Cats to an early 7–0 run against the Pirates.

“I thought that was one of our best defensive efforts we’ve had all year,” head coach Kyle Neptune said. “Both defending and on the glass, our guys came out with a lot of energy. When we defend and rebound like that, I think we got a chance to get anybody.”

From the start of the game the ‘Cats were on top of defense, garnering 11 total steals in the game, five of which came from graduate guard Tyler Burton.  

“Tyler Burton’s great,” Neptune said. “He’s been in a lot of different roles throughout his career, and he’s willing to do anything out there on the floor for us. [With] his energy level, it seemed like he was all over the place. He can make shots with the best of them, he can score, if that’s what’s asked of him. But defensively, I think he’s really starting to take the next step.” 

The Villanova offense started off slow, allowing Seton Hall to stay less than ten points behind throughout most of the half. 

In the waning minutes, Dixon and Hausen helped the Wildcats clinch their double-digit lead with multiple three-point contributions. On defense, graduate guard Hakim Hart made the stop of the game, rejecting 6 ’10 Jaden Bediako’s dunk attempt. 

“I thought we were connected defensively,” Dixon said. “I thought we were giving it up to one another. That’s what we talk about every single day, just being there for the guy next to you.” 

By the time Hart picked the pocket of Pirate freshman guard Isiah Coleman and Bamba hit the resulting layup, Seton Hall had to call a timeout. Although the Pirates hit a three out of the timeout, a matching shot by Armstrong let ‘Cats close go into the locker room with a 39–24 lead. 

At the end of the half, the ‘Cats were outshooting the Pirates with a 57.7% field goal percentage and 46.7% for three-pointers. 

Seton Hall came into the half hot with a three by senior guard Al-Amir Dawes, which Bamba quickly answered with an and-one. 

Although the Pirates showed they were capable of blocking the Wildcats in the paint, Hausen was still able to find his shot behind the arc. Hausen also made diving plays on defense as his team began to struggle with turnovers. 

By the time the ‘Cats reached three in a row and let up two baskets, it was time for Neptune to call a timeout with just over 13 minutes to play.

Following the Villanova timeout, the Wildcats increased and kept their lead beyond 20. The Pirates were running out of steam when it came to guarding Dixon in the paint, Hausen behind the arc and drives from Wildcat guards to the hoop. 

“We got guys that can make shots,” Neptune said. “We work on it all the time. So I’m not surprised when we make shots. That’s probably the thing you can control the least in basketball. So when you make shots and you defend like that, you definitely give yourself a great chance.” 

In the last minutes of the game, as the shots kept falling and the Wildcat lead approached 30 points, there was little the Pirates could do to get back in the game. 

Overall, the ‘Cats went 30–56 (53.0%) on field goals and 14–30 (46.7%) on three-pointers.

“There’s a lot of season left for us,” Neptune said. “Our goal is to be the best team we can be by the end. That hasn’t changed. So we just got to continue to get better. Come back and go to practice. Try to play as hard as we possibly can, practice, and get ready for our next opponent.” 

Next up Villanova will face off against Georgetown University on Friday, Feb. 17 in Washington D.C. Tip-off is set for 7 p.m. The game will be broadcasted on CBS Sports Network. 

Leave a Comment
Donate to The Villanovan
Our Goal

Your donation will support the student journalists of The Villanovan with technological needs, training, etc!

More to Discover
Donate to The Villanovan
Our Goal

Comments (0)

All The Villanovan Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *