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New Jersey basketball: Seton Hall undefeated, St. Peter's still looking for a first win under Patty Coyle

A combined stat study and recap of Seton Hall's win on Friday and St. Peter's loss on Saturday.

New Jersey native (Colts Neck) Lauren Clarke of Brown defending the inbounds against St. Peter's.
New Jersey native (Colts Neck) Lauren Clarke of Brown defending the inbounds against St. Peter's.
Photo by Ray Floriani.

Jersey City, NJ - High school football playoffs were in full swing in New Jersey. Here, the 'Friday Night Lights' were at Walsh Gym on the Seton Hall campus. The Hall hosted Weber State and the following afternoon, in Jersey City, St. Peter's entertained Brown.

The Scores:

Seton Hall 78, Weber State 61

Brown 64, St. Peter's 52

Taking a closer look, we have the Hall off to a 3-0 start while St. Peter's was winless following two games. Both have new coaches skilled at turning around programs. While the very early season returns are at the opposite end we see the respective mentors share a philosophy. That is, giving a hard honest effort on a daily basis.

Seton Hall-Weber State

We will look at the numbers of the respective meetings with a brief summation of the respective games.

Weber State

Seton Hall




Offensive Efficiency






Free Throw %






TO %



The summary: Coach Tony Bozzella was not pleased.

"We played like this was our first game not our third of the season," the Seton Hall coach in his office following the victory over Weber State. He credited Weber State for "out executing and out hustling us."

In very few words, the effort - or lack of it - concerned him. No one was spared Bozzella's wrath. He called the 26 Hall turnovers resulting in a 31% TO rate "disgusting." Tabatha Richardson-Smith led all scorers with 27 points yet her shot selection, as well as the team's, was questioned. Ka-Diedre Sommins added 17 points but her 5 of 14 shooting did not sit well.

"She (Simmons) needs to play better," Bozzella observed.

Bozzella was concerned as the next game was at South Carolina. A team with height and a national ranking. He is also raising the bar, not accepting errors of execution and lack of effort even with a double digit win.

Weber State coach Bethann Ord was pleased to hear of Bozzella's aforementioned praise for his club but added, "we had to be tougher. That was a Big East team and they did a job on us inside (as offensive rebounding percentage can attest)."

A bright spot, in Ord's estimation, was forcing the Hall into 26 turnovers. On the opposite end and concern, were the 18 her own team was guilty of.

On a night the '96 NCAA Sweet Sixteen Seton Hall Women's team was honored, Bozzella said, "It was special to have them here and be honored. I just wished we played better for them."

The stats for St. Peter's - Brown


St. Peter's




Offensive Efficiency






Free Throw %






TO %



The summary: St. Peter's loss puts them at 0-2. New coach Patty Coyle is pleased with the effort.

"They are working hard and not giving in and will not under my watch," she said after the contest.

St. Peter's got off to a 7-0 lead after two minutes. The score was tied at 10 at the 12 minute media time out. Then Brown took over. St. Peter's had trouble stopping and closing out on the perimeter shooters. Brown shot 10 of 22 from three point range. Junior guard Sophie Bikofsky, a 23-point game leading scorer, dialed up 6 of 8 from long distance.

"We tried to get them to put the ball on the floor to stop the three point shooting," Coyle said. "That was our game plan but it wasn't executed as well."

Brown also took great care of the ball as evidenced by the 12% TO rate.

St. Peter's is still struggling with turnovers. Their TO rate was 39% in the opening loss at Hampton. Their resolve was evident in upending Brown in offensive rebounding percentage. St. Peter's did have four scorers in double figures led by Junior guard Antonia Smith's 15 points.

Brown coach Jean Marie Burr credited St. Peter's for "making us play full court. They have a lot of guards that can attack the basket."

"Give them credit," one Brown player said of St. Peter's. "We had them by 18 and it could have gotten to 30 if they gave up. They didn't and got the deficit to 11. They never gave up and were tough out there."

Coyle hopes her club is at its best by January when MAAC play is in full swing. For now, it is improving on a daily basis.

"The attitudes and work ethic of the team are great," she says. "We would just like to start getting some wins to build on."