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Seton Hall, hosting George Washington, looks for fifth straight win

Amanda Boyer/Photography Editor

After a five day hiatus and a Paradise Jam title, the Seton Hall men’s basketball team returns to action to face their toughest task yet, when they host George Washington on Saturday.

The Pirates (4-0) relied on redshirt junior Sterling Gibbs in the title game win over Illinois State in the Virgin Islands. Gibbs dropped a career-high 40 points in the win on Monday, Nov. 24. Against the Colonials, the Hall will need to see more players step up if they want to secure a solid non-conference win.

Freshman Isaiah Whitehead could be a candidate after he made a step in the right direction against the Redbirds. He scored 18 points and had six assists despite committing six turnovers.

The defensive end of the floor is where the biggest steps need to be taken for the Pirates. The blue and white struggled to put away all four of the teams that they have played this season, they were able to finish off Mercer and Gardner-Webb, but Nevada and Illinois State made fans hold their collective breath down the stretch.

On the radar defensively, two players that will stick out to the Pirates include Colonial guard Kethan Savage and forward Kevin Larsen. The two are averaging double figures in points, while also averaging five rebounds a game. Head coach Kevin Willard will need to focus his defense on stopping those two players in order for this team to have success.

The Colonials have five players averaging at least four and a half rebounds a game and four of them average at least five boards. That means frontcourt threats Angel Delgado and Brandon Mobley will have to continue their solid play on the glass.

Both teams also have an “X-factor” that could make a difference in this game.

For George Washington, it is Joe McDonald who has been a Renaissance man. The junior guard is averaging nine and a half points and just under eight rebounds and five assists per game. He can make an impact in so many different ways on the offensive end and Seton Hall will need to keep tabs on him all night long.

Freshman Desi Rodriguez could be the difference maker for the Hall. “Dunkin Desi,” had 15 points and nine boards in the win over Gardner-Webb, which allowed the Pirates to pull away and win. D-Rod’s athleticism and versatility on the offensive end coupled with his ability to finish in transition could be vital.

To stay unbeaten, the blue and white will need to be stronger on both sides of the floor. With the rest, Seton Hall should be ready to go on Saturday. The matchup tips off at the Prudential Center at 4 p.m.

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