Fantastic win. The Irish are really rolling right now.
Give Coach Brey some credit for how he has reorganized this team. Bilas and Raftery talked about the slow-down offense all game. It has improved our overall efficiency and, more importantly, forces the guys to work harder on defense. Hopefully this style will continue the rest of the year and into next season with a less star-centric team.
Harangody was great today, looking like his sophomore self all over again. This is how he should have been performing all year: avoiding the jump shot and racking up a ton of points on layups and fastbreak dunks. He was ruthlessly efficient tonight, such a difference from how he has played most of the year.
We struggled a bit with Seton Hall's press, but controlled the pace very well for most of the game. The Pirates wanted to run, but the Irish stuck to the gameplan and didn't panic after falling behind by seven early. Our slowdown offense may have been ugly to watch and seemingly ineffective when we used it to protect big leads earlier in the year, but now it is very hard to beat.
Tory Jackson had the play of the game when he dived to save the ball from going out of bounds and tipped it forward to a streaking Harangody for the basket. Great hustle. For the game, he had 14 points (all in the second half) and 6 assists to just one turnover. On defense, he was very effective in slowing down the Seton Hall fast break. He came away with one very heady steal that led to his own layup on the other end of the floor.
Ben Hansbrough had a tough night, but recorded one very nice offbalance three pointer. He added in 4 assists and 3 boards, but has struggled a lot the past three games. 5.6 points per on 14% shooting since the win over Georgetown.
Tim Abromaitis was not able to take advantage of a less physical defender in Jeremy Hazell and just scored 9 points, but didn't force it out there. He shot 3-5 from the field and played very well in a support role. He was named the Big East Scholar-Athlete of the Year yesterday, a much deserved honor. I didn't realize that he is on track to graduate in three years. Congrats, Tim. He will be back next season while completing the accelerated MBA program.
Carleton Scott was limited with foul trouble, but still had a very good night. I believe Sean McDonough mentioned how surprising it is that the Irish now look for Luke Harangody to fill in when we're missing Scott's production. 8 points, 7 rebounds. He missed a pair of threes, but otherwise had just about as much production as you could want in 19 minutes.
Ty Nash had 7 points and 5 rebounds, but played in the shadow of Harangody and Scott most of the game. His free throw shooting woes came back, just 1-4 from the line.
Off the bench, Harangody was the star. 20 points and 10 boards. He just let the game come to him tonight and didn't try to dominate anything. If that is what we can expect from him the rest of the year, the Irish will be very dangerous at any pace. Jack Cooley played pretty well in a couple of minutes. It was interesting to see mimi-Gody play alongside his doppelganger. Jonathan Peoples turned the ball over twice on a couple of really dumb plays, but did score a pair of baskets.
On to Pittsburgh, the team that started this current winning streak. Keep it up, Irish.