Brooke Schulte, Jacqui Grant, and Amarah Coleman combined for 50 points as No. 17/17 DePaul beat Seton Hall 86-60, winning its 20th game of the year and its 14th in its last 15 games.
“We got back into an offensive flow which had been missing the last three games,” DePaul coach Doug Bruno said. “I am still proud of the team for gutting out some grinders.”
This is the fastest DePaul has got to 20 wins in a season since 2013. The 20th win in 2013 was also against Seton Hall.
And as good as DePaul’s Big Three was today, and has been this year, DePaul (20-5, 12-1 Big East) also got help today from a familiar foe of Seton Hall, Tanita Allen.
“I just come out, trying to play my best game and give my team the best I can, and I just seem to have better games against Seton Hall,” Allen said.
Allen scored 19 points on 8-11 from the field and added a team-high tying four assists. She scored 30 points against the Pirates in the first meeting between the two teams this season. Seton Hall had closed to 24-14 in the second quarter before Allen answered with a turnaround jumper. Allen also assisted with game management, successfully knocking the game ball from the top of the backboard when the ball got stuck after an official was unsuccessful in his two attempts to knock it free.
“At halftime we focused on the fact that we held Seton Hall to 10 points in the first quarter and 24 points in the second quarter,” Bruno said. “We also talked about losing the battle of the backboards in the second quarter.”
DePaul ended up with a season-high 61 rebounds to Seton Hall’s 35.
And the of defense and rebounding was coupled with offensive action as DePaul opened the third quarter on a 15-2 run to stretch a 39-34 halftime advantage to a 54-38 lead at 6:16.
Seton Hall (11-13, 4-9) had been +32 points in the paint in its last seven games, but the Blue Demons outscored them 30-28 in that area today. The Pirates had also been averaging 12.3 turnovers this season, but DePaul forced 21 today and scored 24 points off of them.
The Pirates have rallied from halftime deficits three times this season to win, but DePaul’s 14-0 run in the fourth quarter along with holding Seton Hall scoreless for 6:25 of the quarter squelched any comeback dreams.
Schulte, improving her bid for Big East Player of the Year with each successive game, had a game-high 22 points and 12 rebounds to go along with three assists and two steals for her fourth straight double-double. She was also key in limiting the Pirates’ JaQuan Jackson to 10 points on 3-14 shooting from the field.
“What I don’t think people understand about Brooke is that we have been asking her to guard the opponents’ best player,” Bruno said. “With this Big East run we have been on since Jessica January went down, Brooke has not only been picking it up scoring-wise, but she has been guarding the opponent’s best player as well.”
This game also showcased the top two candidates for Big East Freshman of the Year, DePaul’s Kelly Campbell and Seton Hall’s Kaela Hilaire.
Campbell got into foul trouble early and finished with two points, five rebounds, two assists, two turnovers, and one steal.
Hilaire finished with a team-high 12 points on 4-18 from the field to go along with a game-high seven assists and a game-high 11 turnovers.
Coleman scored 17 points and Grant 11 points along with a game-high 14 rebounds.
DePaul now plays three straight road games before returning home to play its final two Big East games against Villanova and, on Senior Day, Georgetown.