The Seton Hall Women’s Basketball team defeated the Temple Owls 72- 59 on Tuesday night at Walsh Gymnasium to give head coach Anne Donovan her first win at Seton Hall in the Pirates’ home opener.
Junior Kandice Green scored 11 of her 15 points after halftime and also added 12 rebounds, recording her first double-double of the season. Redshirt sophomore Jasmine Crew led all scorers in the game with 16 points, all in the second half, to go along with four rebounds, three assists and three steals. Both Green and Crew made nine of 12 shots from the free throw line in the game.
Sophomore Brittany Morris made three of four three-pointers to finish with nine points, while freshman Ka-Deidre Simmons added 10 points, three rebounds and three assists of her own off the bench. Junior center Whitney Wood had six points and six rebounds, also off the bench.
Seton Hall opened up in a hole, as Temple went on an 11-3 run to open the game. They also went on a 10-2 run to turn a 20-20 tie into a 30-22 lead late in the first half.
“I think that we were excited to be at home,” Donovan said about the slow start. “We had a nervous energy, and we made some mistakes defensively.”
The Pirates were able to close the gap in the last minute of the half to make the score 30-26 at the half in favor of the Owls.
The Pirates offense started to hasten in the second half. A free throw from Green gave them their first lead of the game at 31-30 at the 18:32 mark. Seton Hall then proceeded to out-score Temple 30-13 over the next 11 minutes. That gave the Pirates a 62-43 lead at the 7:59 mark, and they never looked back from there.
“We know that our defense is going to be the thing that keeps us in games and tonight, it did,” Donovan said. “We really came out aggressive in the second half trying to drive the ball to the basket.”
Temple was able to force the tempo late in the game, but it was not enough to overcome 21 turnovers and a shooting percentage from the field just under 31.
“I thought we were just disorganized down the stretch,” Donovan said. “We had three ball-handlers [in the game], but we were just a little disorganized offensively.”
Seton Hall shot 38 percent (8-21) from three and went to the free throw line 35 times, 31 of which were in the second half. A total of 24 were good for a 68.6 percent clip for the game.
The Pirates got out-rebounded by Temple 47-39, but got 19 points off Temple turnovers while having their bench outscore the Owls’ bench 22-14.
Six Pirates played 20 or more minutes, with two others recording 19 minutes of playing time.
“We’re going to be pretty balanced,” Donovan said. “Right now, I’m still trying to figure out who can help us where, so you’re going to see that balance.”
The Pirates return to action on Nov. 20, when they face LSU in the first round of the Anaconda Sports “The Rock” Seton Hall Classic at Walsh Gym. Tip-off is set for 4 p.m.
Jason Guerette can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.