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No. 1 Syracuse Orange vs. Seton Hall Pirates (11-1) GameThread

The surprising Seton Hall Pirates can put a huge feather in their tricornered cap this evening, as they pay a visit to the top-ranked Syracuse Orange in the Big East Conference opener for both teams.

Seton Hall is 11-1 on the season, and the team is riding the wave of an eight- game winning streak coming into this contest. The Pirates, whose only loss came against Big Ten foe Northwestern (80-73) on a neutral court on November 20, are coming off an 87-61 rout of Longwood two days before Christmas. So far, SHU has topped the likes of VCU, Saint Joseph's, Auburn, Wake Forest and Dayton, so it's obvious the team hasn't built its impressive record on the backs of mostly inferior opponents.

Herb Pope has been a man possessed for Seton Hall this season, as he is averaging a monster double-double consisting of 20.3 points and 11.4 rebounds per game. Jordan Theodore and Fuquan Edwin are both netting double digits as well, scoring 15.8 and 14.0 ppg, respectively, for a team that generates 74.5 ppg on typical shooting outputs of 47.5 percent overall and 35.6 percent from three-point range. Defensively, the Pirates are yielding 62.8 ppg as foes are hitting 42.7 percent of their total shots, which includes a meager 29.5 percent showing from beyond the arc. SHU also owns favorable margins in both rebounding (+3.7) and turnovers (+4.2). Theodore scored a career-high 26 points, getting him past the 1,000-point mark while at SHU, and dished out six assists to lead Seton Hall to its 26-point win at Longwood last week. Edwin matched his career-high with 20 points, while Pope finished with just eight points in 29 minutes of action. Pope did secure a game-high 10 rebounds, helping the Pirates to a 38-30 edge on the glass. Seton Hall shot a sizzling 57.1 percent from the field, which included a 63.3 percent performance in the first half. The Lancers committed 16 turnovers on the night, while the Pirates were guilty of only nine.

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