In a non-conference edition of the Turnpike Tussle, Rutgers continued its trend of coming up a few plays short in the 77-71 loss.
"I felt like we had momentum going," said senior J.J. Moore, who scored 13 points off the bench. "We were playing hard through that [final] stretch, and came up at the end that we didn't get the right play that we needed, and we fell short."
Rutgers and Seton Hall are always good for an interesting turn, and that took place in the second half. The Scarlet Knights got a gift midway through the half when a flagrant two foul bounced SHU's Brian Oliver from the game and another shortly after when guard Brandon Mobley fouled out.
A Moore alley-oop cut the deficit to one point, but Seton Hall still finished strong with Oliver, Mobley, Fuquan Edwin and Patrick Auda all out of the game.
The dagger came with 28 seconds on the clock and a three-point Pirate lead when Haralds Karlis chased down an offensive rebound, which forced Rutgers to play the foul game.
"We knew it wasn't going to be easy to resurrect the entire team, and program," said coach Eddie Jordan. "This is one of the bumps you have to go through to do it."
Rutgers (4-6) continues its slide since the disappointments in the preseason NIT. A third straight loss for the Scarlet Knights, frustration at the slow start continues to build.
"The only way you can get out of it is that you have to work," Jordan said. "You have to work it. You can't get discouraged. You have to work it. There's no other way to do it. You've got to work in practice. You've got to get extra work with shooting, understand concepts, try to understand all of the principles."
The road only gets tougher when Princeton comes to the RAC Wednesday. The Tigers (6-1) have the best record of any New Jersey team.
"It's very frustrating," said junior captain Kadeem Jack, who went for 10 and eight. "It's very, very frustrating. … We just have to win, man. We just have to win. That's it. There's nothing else to take [from it]."