Texas men’s basketball fails road test against No. 23 Seton Hall

Christina Huang, Sports Reporter

Texas fell 60-64 to Seton Hall on Thursday night, netting the team its second loss of the season. 

The Longhorns traveled to Newark, New Jersey, to face the No. 23 Seton Hall Pirates in their first road game since losing to the then No. 1 Gonzaga Bulldogs on Nov. 13. Texas’ opponent was once again favored to win, and this matchup was no different. 

The Pirates were another tough road team for the Longhorns, with much of their advantage over the Horns coming from their pure size. Texas’ two tallest players, junior forwards Tre Mitchell and Dylan Disu, both stand at 6 feet, 9 inches. But Disu is still recovering from a knee surgery and has yet to play a game for Texas. Meanwhile, Seton Hall’s tallest player is 7-foot-2-inch fifth-year center Ike Obiagu. 

The height factor really came into play on the glass. The Pirates outrebounded the Longhorns 19 to 12 in the first half. Texas allowed the Pirates to get more chances to score by not grabbing defensive rebounds as Seton Hall netted 12 second-chance points in comparison to the Longhorns’ four. 

Seton Hall’s large size also showed in the team’s ability to block the ball. The Pirates had six blocks compared to Texas’ two. The Longhorns were also bullied through steals, getting the ball stolen from them six times while only nabbing three steals themselves. 

Despite being outsized by the Pirates as a whole team, Mitchell was able to fight through the much larger defenders. The UMass transfer was the leading scorer for both teams and carried Texas’ offensive momentum. The big man closed out the night with 19 points, 11 rebounds, two steals and two blocks. But Mitchell’s elite playmaking was not enough to overcome the offensive struggles that plagued his teammates.

The Longhorns only successfully made one 3-point shot out of 13 total attempts, making for some of the poorest shooting so far this season. 

But there were still some bright spots in the game, even with the loss.

Texas outscored Seton Hall in the paint 36 to 26. The Longhorns struggled with getting into the paint during their last road game against the Bulldogs, scoring 22 in the paint compared to the Bulldogs’ 44. 

The Longhorns still had three players score in the double digits, with both Mitchell and senior forward Timmy Allen almost scoring 20 points each. 

With tonight’s loss, Texas sits at 0-2 in away games and in games against ranked opponents. The Longhorns must find a way to win on the road if they want to win a consecutive Big 12 title and make a run in the postseason. The next road game against a ranked opponent for Texas comes Jan. 15 against No. 17 Iowa State.