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HALL IN! Pirates’ Late Run Helps Secure 2024 NIT Championship

The Seton Hall men’s basketball program accepted an invitation to the National Invitation Tournament, though it was believed by many BIG EAST and national college basketball reporters that the Pirates deserved a spot in the NCAA’s March Madness tournament.

Despite the obstacle, the Hall cruised their way to the NIT Finals and secured a 79-77 victory over the Indiana State Sycamores.

“I feel like we left the naysayers with something to remember,” senior guard Kadary Richmond added postgame.

Senior wing Dylan Addae-Wusu put in an easy layup at the 13:49 mark of the first half thanks to a pass from graduate center Jaden Bediako to give the Pirates a 16-10 advantage, though the Sycamores retaliated with a 9-0 run.

Leading 31-26, Seton Hall used an 8-2 burst capped off by a triple from senior wing Dre Davis to take their largest lead of the game with 3:30 remaining in the half. Indiana State went on to close the half on another run, this time an 11-0 surge, and the teams went into the break knotted at 39.

“We knew they were going to make runs and we were going to make runs,” Dawes said. “We wanted it more and came out on top.”

Seton Hall opened the half with a 12-3 burst led by seven points from Davis to take an early 51-42 lead.

Indiana State managed to cut into the Pirates’ lead, though, and eventually took their first advantage since the second half, 77-70, with just three minutes remaining, but these Pirates weren’t leaving without a trophy.

Richmond fought his way into the paint to cut the lead to just five, and Dawes capitalized with five-straight points to tie the game at 77.

With 16 seconds remaining, Davis found himself in isolation and forced his way to the rim with a spin move that put the Hall ahead. A crucial block by Bediako on the other end with time expiring helped crown the Pirates as NIT Champions for the first time since 1953.

“I’m just so happy for those guys,” head coach Shaheen Holloway said. “If you guys saw the look on their faces when they didn’t make the Tournament. As their leader, it was the worst feeling not knowing what to say to them.”

Al-Amir Dawes led the box score once again with 24 points and four steals en route to earning the 2024 NIT Most Outstanding Player.

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Richmond followed closely with a 21-point, 13-rebound double-double, along with five assists, two blocks, and a steal. Dre Davis added 18 points, three rebounds, and three blocks.

The championship victory caps off a 25-win season for the Hall, the first since the 2015-2016 campaign. Seton Hall enters the off-season with some questions, though a new banner is guaranteed for the South Orange faithful.

“I’ll be back to see it,” Bediako said. “I’m a Pirate for life.”

Thomas Donnelly is the head editor for the Setonian’s sports section. He can be reached at


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