Seton Hall defeats St. Peter's 67-52
NEWARK, N.J. (AP) Seton Hall senior forward Brandon Mobley knew that he had to have a better performance Sunday than he showed over the last few games.
Mobley scored six points in a huge 15-4 run at the end of the first half en route to a season-high 21, leading Seton Hall to a 67-52 victory over cross-state rival St. Peter's on Sunday.
''I just concentrated on taking the ball inside more and not staying on the perimeter all the time,'' said Mobley, who connected on 8-of-13 from the floor. ''Once I was able to get a few easy ones, I was able to get in a rhythm.''
The win enabled the Pirates to improve to 8-1 overall and avenged a loss they suffered at the hands of the Peacocks (4-7) last year.
Seton Hall rebounded after a tough loss to Wichita State last Tuesday, taking a 39-27 lead at the break and gradually increasing its lead in the second half.
''Brandon sort of steadied the ship for us,'' Seton Hall coach Kevin Willard said. ''He did a good job toward the end of the first half of getting easy buckets.''
Junior guard Sterling Gibbs added 12 points for Seton Hall. Freshman forward Angel Delgado continued his solid rebounding, grabbing 12 boards, nine of which came on the offensive end.
''He just has great passion to go get the basketball,'' Willard said of Delgado. ''With a little maturity, he can turn that into 18 rebounds and score more points off the rebounds.''
Delgado took just three shots and scored seven points. Fellow freshman Isaiah Whitehead, who was averaging better than 20 points per game in the last five outings, managed just five points.
Desi Washington had 13 points to lead the Peacocks. Washington, coming off a knee injury that forced him to miss eight games, made just 4-of-13 shots. He scored a career-high 34 in leading the Peacocks to their upset win over Seton Hall last year, 83-80 in overtime.
''The only thing we talked about was to make things difficult for Desi, because he took over the game late last year,'' Willard said. ''He has the ability to put up numbers. Our guys worked at making things tough for him.''
The Peacocks had a tough day shooting all around, connecting on 36 percent from the floor (19-of-52) and just 16 percent from 3-point range (2-for-12).
''We just missed shots that we would normally make,'' St. Peter's head coach John Dunne said. ''We do normally make those shots. We had been shooting at such a high level. We had a lot of looks, some clean looks and just didn't make them. I think we're just kind of shot physically and mentally and you clearly need to be at your best to beat a team like Seton Hall.''
Elias Desport added 12 points and Tyler Gaskins 11 in a losing cause.
Seton Hall: The Pirates remain as the top offensive rebounding team in the Big East. They average 12.5 offensive rebounds per game and had 13 Sunday, led by Delgado's nine. ... Mobley rebounded after having two sub-par performances against Mount St. Mary's and Wichita State. His point total was the best since scoring 19 in the season opener against Mercer.
St. Peter's: Desport set a career high with 12 points. The junior forward entered the game averaging just 2.4 points per game in 10 games. ... Washington hit a 3-pointer in overtime to give the Peacocks an 83-80 victory last year, snapping a 17-game losing streak against Seton Hall.
It was the 86th time that Seton Hall faced cross-state rival St. Peter's, the most common annual foe for the Pirates outside of Big East opponents. The two programs have faced each other every year since 1949-50. Seton Hall leads the all-time series, 62-24. The first game was played in the 1931-32 season.
Whitehead, the heralded freshman and first McDonald's All-American to go to Seton Hall in 14 years, managed to make just two of 11 shots and scored five points. Whitehead came into the game having scored 25 against Rutgers and 23 against Wichita State.
Gibbs has reached double figures in all nine Seton Hall games this season.
Seton Hall travels to South Florida on Thursday.
St. Peter's plays host to Fairleigh Dickinson on Dec. 23.