Pirates win in Omaha behing Sterling Gibbs
Seton Hall Athletics
Decked in black and blue uniforms, the Seton Hall men’s basketball team got bruised and battered all game by a resilient Creighton squad in Nebraska. But in the end, the Pirates (13-3, 3-1) emerged victorious, 68-67, thanks to more heroics from standout point guard Sterling Gibbs.
The Pirates, fresh off their first loss in conference play to Xavier on Jan. 7, entered their second game since being ranked 19th in the country. Saturday’s win against the Bluejays was a nice bounce-back for head coach Kevin Willard’s young team who picked up a split on the road.
Gibbs led the way with 24 points, going 8-for-16 from the field and four-for-eight from three-point range, including the game-winning dagger with 2.1 seconds left on the clock.
Creighton stuck with the Pirates all day, behind junior guard James Milliken, who led the Bluejays with 20 points, a total that nearly matched a career-high of 23. Senior center Will Artino had 14 points on the afternoon for Creighton, including a back layup with 17.2 seconds left that put the Bluejays on top of the Pirates 67-65 lead with seconds to go before Gibbs isolated his man and drilled a three-pointer to give his team the lead and the win.
The Bluejays, now 0-4 in Big East play, fought hard all afternoon, passing with quickness and cutting with purpose. The team shot 53.3 percent on the day, going 24-for-45 from the field.
In the end, Seton Hall had the best player on the floor—Gibbs. No other Pirate reached double figures in the scoring column, though freshman Khadeen Carrington and senior Brandon Mobley each added nine points. Angel Delgado added seven points and nine boards, but fouled out of the game with less than two minutes to go.
With Isaiah Whitehead a possibility to return as early as Jan. 13 against Butler, the Pirates will continue to battle in a Big East conference that’s proving to be one of the toughest and deepest conferences in the country.
Saturday’s victory puts Seton Hall in second place in the conference at a mark of 3-1. Providence also stands at 3-1 with #8 Villanova and Xavier close behind ta 2-1. DePaul began the season with an impressive three-game conference win streak.
Seton Hall will return home to the Prudential Center for a two-game home stand against Butler and DePaul on Jan. 13 and 22. Both games will be played at 7 p.m.