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No. 25 Wildcats Handle Pirates, 66-52

Feb. 17, 2005

Final Stats

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) - Curtis Sumpter scored 25 points to lead No. 25 Villanova to a 66-52 win over Seton Hall on Thursday night.

Sumpter came up with the key baskets late in both halves to propel the Wildcats (16-6, 6-5 Big East) to their fourth win in the last five games. Randy Foye and Mike Nardi each had 10 points for Villanova.

Andre Sweet had 13 points for Seton Hall (11-11, 3-8) and Kelly Whitney scored 10 for the Pirates, who have just one win in their last five games.

Villanova took control with a 19-8 run to close out the first half with a 33-21 lead. Sumpter was the catalyst with three 3-pointers in that 7:47 span.

Villanova also got help from the mistake-prone Pirates. Seton Hall committed 16 turnovers in the first half to tilt what had been a close game solidly in the Wildcats' favor.

The Pirates tried to rally early in the second half and managed to cut the deficit to eight when Jamar Nutter hit a 3-pointer, making it 35-27.

The Wildcats quickly ended the rally with eight straight points on a basket by Will Sheridan, a three-point play by Sumpter and a 3-pointer by Allan Ray.

Villanova opened an 18-point lead, 49-31, but Seton Hall clawed back with 12 straight points, the last six on consecutive 3-pointers by Justin Cerasoli.

Sumpter, as he did in the first half, turned the game back in Villanova's favor with five straight points to give the Wildcats a 54-43 lead.

Seton Hall played without swingman J.R. Morris, who was suspended to "focus on his academic obligations," according to a written statement issued by the school. Morris had started 20 of the Pirates' 21 games and was averaging 10.1 points, third best on the team.