Walsh Gym—-All season long Seton Hall head coach Anthony Bozzella preached about starting games with energy and a sense of purpose. Tonight the Pirates put a full sixty minutes of hard nose of basketball together.
Lauren Park-Lane scored 30 points to lead the Seton Hall Pirates (19-14) in a 69-61 win over St. Joseph’s on Thursday at the Historic Walsh Gymnasium.
The Pirates coming off a tough 75-74 over time loss to Creighton in the Big East Tournament surely felt like they let one slipped by them. But when you stay focus in March anything can happen.
With the win, the Pirates advances to the second round of the WNIT and will play Syracuse on Monday, March 20th at Walsh.
Seton Hall set the tone from the start of the game. The Pirates out-scored St. Joseph’s 31-13 in the first quarter, which was a little too much for the Hawks to overcome. The Hawks fought back for the final three quarters, and trim the Pirates lead to two points late in the fourth, but Parker-Lane and Sidney Cooks was clutch down the stretch.
The Huskies scored seven of the first nine points to open the second quarter, which upped their lead to 32-12 with 7:50 to go before the break. Down 39-18, the Pirates scored six straight, and a three-point play by Mya Bembry trimmed the deficit to 39-24 with 4:12 to go to the half.
The Pirates took a 42-26 lead into the break. Seton Hall shot 48.3% (14-29) from the field and shot 46.7% (7-15) from beyond the arc.
“I thought they showed great maturity to come out and play the way they did, but even more so the second half,” Bozzella said.
In the second half, the Pirates pressed the ball hard and took the Hawks out their flow for the first five minutes until they started to find Zeigler on the perimeter, it was just a little too late.
Laura Ziegler scored 18 points and Tayla Brugler chipped in 17 for St. Joseph’s (20-11), which had its seven-game winning streak snapped.
The Hawks were down 44-27 early in the third, Saint Joseph’s went on a 7-0 spurt causing coach Bozzella to call a timeout, then they cut the lead to 44-34 with 7:38 left in the quarter. SHU built the lead back up to 15 points on the backs Park-Lane and Cooks. St. Joseph’s drained deep treys on back-to-back possessions to trim the lead to just nine entering the fourth quarter. SHU tightened on the perimeter and got a few stops down the stretch.
The Hall out-rebounded Saint Joseph’s, 42-to-28 for the game.
Park-Lane tied Seton Hall’s record for most points in an NCAA or WNIT contest. Former Pirate Jodi Brooks scored 30 against Vermont in the NCAA Tournament on March 16, 1994.
Seton Hall will play on Monday, March 20 when it hosts Syracuse in the second round of the WNIT in Walsh Gymnasium. Tip time is scheduled for 7:00 P.M.