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Big East Basketball Roundup: Seton Hall And Providence Nearly Pull Off Upsets

Saturday was filled with Big East Conference college hoops games and in case you couldn't catch all the action here's a quick SB Nation New York roundup of the big stories around the nation's best league.

The No. 17 Syracuse Orange (20-4, 7-4 Big East) ended their three-game road stretch with a decisive 72-49 victory at the South Florida Bulls (8-16, 2-9). In Los Angeles, the St. John's Red Storm (13-9, 5-5) dropped a non-conference game to the UCLA Bruins 66-59. (Click on the score to read full game recaps.)

Hazell and Seton Hall nearly upset UConn

Senior guard Jeremy Hazell tallied a game-best 20 points and collected 11 rebounds for the Seton Hall Pirates (10-14, 4-8), who led by as much as 14 points but couldn't stop a late-game rally that led the Connecticut Huskies (18-6, 6-4) to a 61-59 road victory.

The Huskies (No. 6 in the AP poll and No. 7 in the USA Today/ESPN Coaches poll) used a 25-9 second-half run to snap a two-game losing streak. SHU's only basket in the game's final eight minutes was a Hazell lay up with two seconds remaining. Senior forward Jeff Robinson netted 15 points and collected 11 rebounds for SHU. The nation's third-best scorer, junior guard Kemba Walker, scored a team-best 19 points for UConn.

The only good news for Pirates fans came after the game when junior forward Herb Pope, SHU's leading rebounder, announced he'll be returning for his senior season.

Brooks' 43 points not good enough against Georgetown

Senior guard Marshon Brooks scored a collegiate-best 43 points, the fifth-highest total in Big East history, for Providence (14-10, 3-8) but his one-man show wasn't enough to topple the Georgetown Hoyas (18-5, 7-4) who earned 83-81 victory.

The Hoyas (No. 13 in the AP poll and No. 14 in the USA Today/ESPN Coaches poll), who led by as much as 18 points, collected their sixth straight victory. Senior guard Austin Freeman netted at team-high 23 points. Brooks also collected 10 rebounds for the Friars, who have not earned a road victory this season.

No. 4 Pitt downs Cincinnati

Junior guard Ashton Gibbs scored a game-best 25 points for visiting Pittsburgh (21-2, 9-1), which downed the Cincinnati Bearcats 71-59. The Bearcats (18-5, 5-5) have lost five of their last eight games after beginning the season 15-0.

Wayns, Fisher help 'Nova past WVU

Sophomore guard Maalik Wayns netted a team-best 17 points, teammate senior guard Corey Fisher added 16 to help No. 12 Villanova Wildcats beat the visiting West Virginia Mountaineers, 66-50.

The Wildcats (19-4, 7-3) led by just five points, 45-40, midway through the second half but used a 19-3 run to pull away. Junior forward Kevin Jones scored a team-high 16 points for WVU (15-7, 6-4).

Depleted Louisville snakes past DePaul

Junior guard Kyle Kuric netted a team-best 19 points for Louisville, which earned a slim 61-57 victory over visiting DePaul. The Cardinals (18-5, 7-3) played without their leading scorer (senior forward Preston Knowles), rebounder (sophomore forward Rakeem Buckles) and shot blocker (junior forward Jared Swopshire).

The Blue Demons (6-16, 0-1) dropped their 23rd straight Big East contest.

Big East Conference Standings

(updated 2.6.2011 at 2:28 AM EST)