NEW YORK – Sterling Gibbs hit a step-back jumper at the buzzer and Seton Hall stunned No. 3 Villanova 64-63 in a thrilling Big East quarterfinal Thursday, a loss that could cost the Wildcats a No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament.
Eugene Teague had 19 points and 12 rebounds for the eighth-seeded Pirates (17-16), who advanced to the Big East tournament semifinals for the first time in 13 years. They will play St. John's or Providence on Friday night at Madison Square Garden.
Josh Hart came off the bench and scored 18 to lead the top-seeded Wildcats (28-4), beaten only twice in 18 regular-season conference games while winning their first outright Big East title since 1982. Both losses were blowouts by Doug McDermott and Creighton.
Patrik Auda scored all 13 of his points in the first half for Seton Hall, a 10½-point underdog. But the Pirates, accustomed to playing close games, built a 15-point lead and recovered after Villanova spurted past them with a 16-0 run in the second half.