Riding high on a four-game winning streak, DePaul welcomed the Seton Hall Pirates to McGrath-Phillips Arena looking to make it five-in-a-row in front of thousands of children for ‘Field Trip Day’. However, the Pirates had other plans and left Chicago with a win.
No. 23/21 DePaul (16-7, 8-2) dropped its second conference game 83-74 to No. 25 Seton Hall in a game that looked at one point completely out of reach for the Blue Demons.
“They were more ready to play at the start of the game than we were”, coach Doug Bruno said. “They got off to a great start and we didn’t.”
The great start Bruno is referring to is the 21-6 lead the Pirates had when the first quarter ended. Nothing was falling for the Blue Demons and Megan Podkowa getting into foul trouble early on meant Bruno had to bring in players off the bench sooner than he’d have liked.
“I went with some people that I thought had been giving us some boost, but they really weren’t ready to play today or weren’t up to this level of ball game today and that kind of hurt us today,” Bruno said. “I don’t want to blame the bench kids for (being down by 20), but they didn’t help any.”
Shot selection was a big issue today for DePaul as they went a dismal 27-74 from the floor and 9-36 from behind the three-point line. Even with the poor shooting night, the Blue Demons still managed to get back into the game with a 15-0 run in the second quarter that saw them go from being down 33-13 to getting within five points. Chanise Jenkins gives some of the credit to the young crowd.
“The kids were great,” Jenkins said. “They’re always yelling and screaming and it’s an overall great atmosphere and it definitely helped us in our run.”
Despite the comeback, the Blue Demons never were able to get close enough to tie the game. Every time DePaul made a big shot, Seton Hall was there to respond with one of its own.
Bruno made light of the loss due to it being ‘Field Trip Day’ and the importance being on the children, not his team.
“I guess the kids from CPS have to learn that DePaul sometimes loses.”
The loss means Sunday’s game against St. John’s is even more important than before with the Red Storm currently second in the Big East with a record of 7-2 and a game-in-hand on the Blue Demons.