Seton Hall Pirates vs. North Texas Mean Green Eagles Pick & Prediction MARCH 23rd 2024

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Seton Hall was among the Big East schools left out of the NCAA Tournament bracket, drawing criticism from within the league.

After coach Shaheen Holloway consulted with his veteran starters and seniors, the top-seeded Pirates opted to keep playing in the NIT and were successful in an opening-round game.

The Pirates will attempt to advance in the tournament Saturday when they host North Texas in South Orange, N.J.

The Pirates (21-12) recovered from the disappointment of being left out of the Big Dance in time to make enough plays down the stretch in a 75-72 overtime thriller over St. Joseph’s in their tiny on-campus facility Wednesday.

Al-Amir Dawes helped Seton Hall advance and overcome an eight-point deficit in the second half by totaling 26 points and 10 rebounds. He highlighted his big night with a tying 3-pointer at the end of regulation and the go-ahead 3-pointer in the final minute of overtime.

“Despite what happened, we just wanted to play,” Dawes said. “We made that decision collectively. One down.”

Dylan Addae-Wusu added 18 points and Dre Davis contributed 14 points and 11 rebounds to help offset a quiet six-point showing from Kadary Richmond. Four of Seton Hall’s starters played at least 40 minutes and Davis played the full 45.

“We wanted to play, especially for our seniors going out, to get an opportunity to keep on playing and do something special,” Davis said.

If Seton Hall can get past North Texas, it will host Boston College or UNLV next week for a trip to the semifinals in Indianapolis.

North Texas (19-14) began defense of last season’s NIT title with an 84-77 victory at LSU on Tuesday when it equaled its season high for points. CJ Noland scored 21 points to lead four players in double figures. He has reached double figures in seven of eight games since returning from an injury last month.

“We have a bunch of young men who are ecstatic,” Mean Green assistant coach Johnny Estelle told the Denton Record-Chronicle. “They have been through so much, keep hanging in with each other and believing in each other. They don’t want the season to end.”

Rubin Jones added 17 against LSU while the trio of Jason Edwards, Aaron Scott and Robert Allen combined for 38 as North Texas scored at least 70 points for the seventh straight game.

–Field Level Media

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