Seton Hall 66, #6 Villanova 61 (OT) - No Isaiah Whitehead for the third consecutive game. Six guys with two fouls at halftime. A Villanova team looking to set a program record for consecutive wins to start a season.
None of it mattered to Seton Hall as they jumped out to an early lead, weathered the storm, and survived overtime in order to defeat Villanova to move to 2-0 in the Big East. It's the second straight win over a ranked team for the Pirates, who defeated #15 St. John's on New Year's Eve before the Red Storm started melting down with the "indefinite leave" of Rysheed Jordan.
Freshman Khadeen Carrington was pressed into service for 35 of the 45 minutes in the game, and it paid off for head coach Kevin Willard. Carrington hit a layup for his 14th and 15th points with 98 seconds left to give Seton Hall the lead for good, and after a Ryan Arcidiacono miss for VU, Carrington snagged the offensive rebound off a Sterling Gibbs missed three pointer and got fouled. He made both, and the Pirates led by three. Gibbs had the game clinching steal on the ensuing possession.
Gibbs had 20 points to lead SHU, while Daniel Ochefu had 19 points and 24 rebounds to power the Wildcats in the losing effort. Run yourself over to South Orange Juice or VU Hoops for more.
DePaul 71, Xavier 68 - 15 points and 10 assists from Billy Garrett led the way for the Blue Demons who find themselves at 2-0 and tied for first place in the Big East. With the win, DePaul matches their best start in the Big East, set in 2008 when they opened with home wins over Villanova and Providence.
I ended up seeing the very end of this game in the concourse of the Bradley Center following the end of the Marquette-Providence game. Trevon Bluiett's three to tie things at 66 was fantastic, but Xavier's offense to try to retie the game after two Aaron Simpson free throws was not amazing. They ended up with three offensive rebounds, but two of them came off of blocks by Tommy Hamilton.
Forrest Robinson had 17 points to lead DePaul in scoring, while Bluiett's 19 were tops for Xavier. The Musketeers are going to struggle to win games when their other four starters combine for only 29 points. Check out Banners On The Parkway for more about Xavier's loss.
Butler 73, #15 St. John's 69 - After eight straight wins by the home team in conference games, St. John's went and blew the streak. Butler got 28 points from a white hot Kellen Dunham and outlasted the Red Storm to hand SJU their first loss at Carnesecca Arena this season.
We already mentioned the departure of Rysheed Jordan from the active St. John's roster, but they were also without Felix Balamou due to an ankle sprain in this game. That led to just 14 minutes played by the Red Storm bench, and all that Joey De La Rosa, Christian Jones, and Myles Stewart added to the game was two missed shots and one rebound. D`Angelo Harrison did his best to try to match the 8-16 overall and 6-7 behind the arc from Dunham, as the Red Storm senior scored 31 points on 10-21 shooting and added five rebounds, two assists, three steal, and a block.
The win is the first official win for Chris Holtmann as Butler head coach. The Bulldogs removed his interim tag on Friday, officially replacing Brandon Miller as head coach. You can find out more on this game at Rumble In The Garden.
#25 Georgetown 76, Creighton 61 - Freshman were the difference for the Hoyas, who got 37 total points from Tre Campbell, L.J. Peak, and Paul White in order to even their Big East record at 1-1 after one week.
Joshua Smith still led the team in scoring with 16 points, but he played just 20 minutes due to foul trouble. Mikael Hopkins was hampered by infractions as well, giving way to lots of playing time and opportunity for the freshman trio to show what they were made of. Peak shot 5-7 for 14 points, while White and Campbell did their damage behind the arc (a combined 5-8) to go for 10 and 13 points respectively.
Geoffrey Groselle and Zach Hanson both had 11 points to top the Bluejay stat sheet. It's the first 0-2 start in conference play for Creighton since 2010, when they were still in the Missouri Valley Conference. Be sure to check in with White & Blue Review for the CU perspective and Casual Hoya for the GU side of things.