Seton Hall women’s basketball won its exhibition game 80-54 against Philadelphia University Saturday afternoon in Walsh Gym.
The first quarter was Seton Hall’s best. Kaity Healy made a three-pointer off the bat, and that set the tone for five three-pointers in that quarter. JaQuan Jackson had three of those.
Jackson was the star of the game; she had 16 points in the first quarter alone on 6-6 shooting, and poured it on all game.
“It’s a reflection of how much she’s worked,” Bozzella said. “It’s not by accident. Quanny does not get a practice off, does not take a play off from practice. She continues to improve her game, and when you work that hard, you see the fruits of that, and I think she’s started to tonight.”
The first quarter ended with a Jackson three, and Seton Hall held a 24-14 lead, with Jackson out-shooting the opponent team alone.
As the game went onto the second quarter, guard and co-captain LaTecia Smith made her presence known as she was active offensively, causing steals and bringing them back for layups.
Seton Hall had a heavy 16-3 advantage in steals after the game, and Bozzella says that’s the result he wants to see and what will win games.
“We’ve got to win that (steals) every single game by seven to 10,” Bozzella said. “If we don’t win the steals by 7 to 10, we have no chance of winning. That means we have to take care of the ball, which we did for most of the game. Not give them easy baskets, but also steal the ball and get easy baskets for us.”
Once Jackson made a three with 3:56 remaining in the second quarter for her 25th point, Seton Hall would not go on to make another point before the half ended with a 43-31 lead for the Pirates.
The first half of the third quarter was much of the same, with Seton Hall only scoring one point in five minutes of play. The Pirates finally scored a field goal again with 4:42 remaining in the third quarter, a three-pointer from Deja Winters, her first make of five attempts.
During that dry stretch, Bozzella just wanted the team to get an easy basket to get back into the swing of things.
“Steal the ball so we can get a layup,” Bozzella said on the message to the team. “We scored 80 points by only scoring in 30 minutes of the game, so we see how much potential we have with that.”
The quarter finished with more offensive contributions from Seton Hall and more defensive pressure, giving the Pirates a 61-41 lead going into the fourth quarter.
Seton Hall maintained and built upon its lead in the fourth quarter, forcing back-to-back shot clock violations and giving younger players some more minutes. Walk-on players Ali Fitgerald and Chanel Jemmot logged their first minutes of play for Seton Hall.
Junior Claire Lundberg came in late and made back-to-back threes to cap off the game and an 11-point night.
Still, no one’s play came close to Jackson’s 31-point contribution. The Louisiana Tech transfer’s hard work is finally paying off after sitting out a year due to NCAA transfer rules.
“I think it was more of a test for us, to see what we can do versus another team,” Jackson said. “Showing up and making big shots and shooting it when I was open was a big thing for me, so I just kept shooting.”
Seton Hall women’s basketball starts its season officially on Fri, Nov. 11 against Savannah State at 11 a.m. in Walsh Gym.
Elizabeth Swinton can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @eswint22.