Freshly Squeezed (3/19)

Dancin’

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Syracuse.com

Syracuse entered the ACC Tournament feeling pretty good about their NCAA Tournament chances for the first time since 2013.

Despite being without leading scorer Tyus Battle due a lower back injury, the Orange defeated Pittsburgh, 73-59, in the first round of the ACC Tournament on Wednesday night. Syracuse trailed the Panthers, 36-30, at halftime, but used an 8-0 run with all 8 points scored by Buddy Boeheim to take a 43-39 lead early in the second stanza. The Orange would not relinquish the lead the rest of the way.

After shooting 60-percent from three-point range in the first half, Pittsburgh cooled down and shot just 30.8-percent from deep after the break. Conversely, Syracuse heated up from beyond the arc down the stretch, shooting 54.6-percent from three in the second half.

Jared Wilson-Frame led the Panthers with 24 points, on 8-of-16 from three-point land, and seven rebounds. Sidy N’Dir added 10 points in the losing effort.

Boeheim paced Syracuse with 20 points, on 6-of-13 shooting, six rebounds, four assists, and two steals. Elijah Hughes and Frank Howard scored 18 points apiece. Hughes also grabbed four rebounds, dished out three assists, and came away with two steals.

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Democrat and Chronicle

The Orange squared off with Duke in the quarterfinals of the ACC Tournament on Thursday night. Battle missed his second straight game with a lower back injury. After rallying back from as much as a 17 point deficit in the first half, Syracuse tied the game at 46 on a triple by Boeheim with 13:02 to go. The Blue Devils pulled away down the stretch to win 84-72.

In a turnover plagued affair, Duke outshot the Orange as the Blue Devils shot 53.7-percent from the floor, compared to 48.1-percent shooting for Syracuse.

The real difference in the game was that Duke has the best player in the country and the likely #1 pick in the NBA Draft Zion Williamson. Williamson, who returned after missing five consecutive games with a sprained knee, erupted for 29 points on a perfect 13-of-13 from the floor, 14 rebounds, and five steals. Fellow freshman phenomenon RJ Barrett tallied 23 points, on 8-of-16 from the field, and six rebounds. Freshman point guard Tre Jones finished with 15 points and eight assists.

Howard led the Orange with a career-high 28 points, on 11-of-2o shooting, and three assists. Boeheim poured in 15 points, while Oshae Brissett finished with 15 points and seven rebounds.

Despite the loss, Syracuse entered the NCAA Tournament with a record of 20-13. Howard was named to the ACC Tournament Second Team, while Williamson was named the MVP after Duke won the championship game over Florida State, 73-63, Saturday night.

Battle is expected to return in the NCAA Tournament, but playing without him in the ACC Tournament gave others the opportunity to step up, specifically, Howard and Boeheim.

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Syracuse.com

Player of the Week: Frank Howard

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The Daily Orange

This week’s player of the week for Syracuse was Frank Howard. After a lower leg injury caused him to miss the first four games of the season, Howard did not play to the form he showed he was capable of during his junior campaign. The senior point guard averaged 23 points on 50-percent shooting in Battle’s absence at the ACC Tournament. With Battle back and Howard and Boeheim shooting with confidence, the Orange just might be poised to make another run in the “Big Dance.”

Up Next: The NCAA Tournament vs. #9 Baylor

For the first time since 2013, Syracuse did not have to sweat it out on Selection Sunday. This year, the Orange were firmly in and earned the 8-seed in the West Region. Syracuse will take on the 9-seed Baylor in Salt Lake City, Utah. Tip-off is set for Thursday night at 9:57pm. The game will be seen on truTV. The Bears are 19-13 overall and are coming off an 83-66 loss to Iowa State in the Big 12 Tournament quarterfinals. Baylor is led by Tristan Clark who is averaging 14.6 points and 6.3 rebounds per game.

If the Orange were to defeat the Bears, they would take on the winner of the game between the 1-seed Gonzaga and the 16-seed Fairleigh Dickinson, who defeated Prairie View in the First Four Tuesday night.

Freshly Squeezed (12/17)

Syracuse Stunned by Old Dominion

jbsadodu
syracuse.com

Syracuse, who was riding a five game win streak, fell victim to an upset at the hands of the Old Dominion Monarchs.

The Orange used a 12-2 run to build a 33-23 advantage at the break. Old Dominion rallied throughout the second stanza and took a 59-54 lead with 2:47 left on a layup by Xavier Green to close out an 8-1 spurt. The Monarchs would not relinquish their lead and escaped the Carrier Dome with a 68-62 upset win over #25 Syracuse.

It was a tale of two halves as the Orange connected on 39.1-percent of their attempts from the field and held Old Dominion to 34.8-percent shooting in the first 20 minutes. The Monarchs bounced back in the second half and ran away as they shot a blistering 55.6-percent from the floor and held Syracuse to a disappointing 28-percent clip down the stretch.

BJ Stith led Old Dominion’s comeback as he scored all of his 18 points after intermission.

Tyus Battle paced the Orange with 23 points on 5-of-14 shooting, 2-of-6 from three, and 11-of-15 from the charity stripe. Elijah Hughes added 15 points on 4-of-9 from the field and four rebounds.

The Monarchs exposed a lot of Syracuse’s glaring weaknesses, specifically, with Old Dominion out-rebounding the Orange 38-33. Syracuse struggles from the field and relies on getting to the free throw line as part of their offense. The Orange shot a dreadful 22-for-34 from the stripe. If Syracuse continues to struggle from the field, they cannot afford to miss opportunities at the foul line.

Syracuse now has three non-conference losses and faltering against the Monarchs means that the Orange will likely enter the ACC slate closer to the “bubble” than expected in the offseason. Syracuse is desperate for a victory over #14 Buffalo in the Dome on Tuesday night.

Player of the Week: Tyus Battle

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syracuse.com

Tyus Battle was unable to carry his team to victory against Old Dominion on Saturday, but he has now scored 20+ points in six of the Orange’s ten games. Battle will need his teammates to step up if Syracuse plans to get back on the right track on Tuesday night against Buffalo.

Up Next: #14 Buffalo and Arkansas State

The Orange host #14 Buffalo on Tuesday night. Tip-off is set for 8pm. The Bulls are 10-0 and have climbed to fourteenth in the country. Buffalo is coming off a 73-65 win over Southern Illinois Saturday night. The Bulls are led by CJ Massinburg who is averaging 17.1 points, 7.1 rebounds, and 2.9 assists per game. Last year, Syracuse beat Buffalo 81-74.

After taking on the Bulls, the Orange will square off against Arkansas State Saturday afternoon at 2pm. The Red Wolves are 4-6 and are coming off a 75-71 victory over Florida Atlantic on Friday night. Arkansas State is led by Ty Cockfield who is averaging 22.6 points, 3.8 points, and 2.9 assists per game.

Freshly Squeezed (12/10)

Syracuse on a Five Game Win Streak

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The Daily Orange

Syracuse is back in the Top 25 for the first time since the week of November 12 after defeating Northeastern and Georgetown in the Carrier Dome last week.

The Orange faced Colonial Athletic Association favorite, Northeastern, Tuesday night. Syracuse jumped out to an early 10-2 lead, but the Huskies scored 10 unanswered points to take a 12-10 lead. This was the only lead Northeastern held over the Orange all night. Syracuse closed the half on a 9-0 run with baskets by freshman guards Jalen Carey and Buddy Boeheim to take a 30-23 advantage into intermission.

The Orange’s patented 2-3 zone stymied the Huskies in the second half. Northeastern shot 32.1-percent from the floor in the closing stanza, including 2-of-16 from beyond the arc, which allowed Syracuse to roll to a 72-47 win.

The Orange outrebounded the Huskies 43-29 and held a 19-8 edge in second chance points.

Tomas Murphy led Northeastern with 17 points, on 7-of-10 shooting, and eight rebounds.

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Times Union

Oshae Brissett posted a double-double with 21 points and 14 boards. Elijah Hughes scored 17 points, on 6-of-11 from the field and 3-of-8 from three. Boeheim chipped in with 11 points on 4-of-10 from the floor, including 3-of-7 from deep off the bench.

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Frank Howard and Tyus Battle scored two points apiece on a combined 2-of-12 from the field and Syracuse still earned the win—a result that would have been unheard of last season.

The Orange hosted the Georgetown Hoyas in a matchup of old Big East rivals on Saturday afternoon in front of a raucous crowd of 24,082—the largest attendance in college basketball yet this season.

Patrick Ewing’s Hoyas jumped out to an early lead thanks to their impenetrable defense that forced Syracuse to miss 12 of their first 13 shots. Georgetown took a 35-22 lead into the break and held the Orange to 25-percent from the floor, including 1-of-14 from distance.

Syracuse came out of the locker room in the second half and played their best twenty minutes of basketball thus far in the 2018-19 campaign. The Orange went on a 14-4 run to pull within 39-36 on a layup by Battle with 16:05 left. The Hoyas responded with a 7-2 spurt to keep Syracuse’s comeback at bay for the time being. The Orange had an answer and took a 54-48 lead on a layup by Brissett with 9:52 remaining. Georgetown came back and tied the game at 60 on a free throw by Josh LeBlanc with 5:51 to go.

The teams traded baskets and Jessie Govan connected on a triple to give the Hoyas a 71-70 lead with 1:08 to play. Battle missed a jumper with 40 ticks on the clock and Jagan Mosely controlled the defensive board for the Hoyas. Syracuse coach, Jim Boeheim, made the gutsy decision not to foul and Marek Dolezaj drew a charge with 10.6 seconds left to give the Orange one last chance to beat Georgetown.

Enter Tyus Battle. As he has done so many times in his Syracuse career, the junior guard brought the ball up the court and put a dagger into the hearts of the Hoya faithful as he nailed a jumper with 2.5 seconds remaining on the clock, sending the Carrier Dome crowd into a frenzy. Jahvon Blair’s half-court heave clanged off the back iron and the Orange prevailed 72-71 in the latest installment of the storied rivalry.

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syracuse.com

Syracuse holds a 51-43 lead over Georgetown in the series. With the ACC schedule expanding to 20 games next season, it is uncertain as to whether or not the two schools will renew the rivalry in 2019-20, but both Boeheim and Ewing expressed their interest in continuing the rivalry moving forward.

The Orange’s comeback was fueled by an efficient offensive attack as Syracuse shot 60-percent from the field in the final 20 minutes and held the Hoyas to a 41.4-percent clip in the period. Georgetown outrebounded the Orange 45-34, but Syracuse forced the Hoyas into 15 turnovers.

Govan posted a double-double with 22 points, on 9-of-18 shooting and 2-of-3 from three point land, and 12 rebounds. He also dished out four assists.

Battle led the Orange with 26 points, on 8-of-18 from the floor, and five rebounds. Hughes added 15 points and six boards, while Brissett finished with 12 points and nine rebounds.

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Troy Nunes is An Absolute Magician

Player of the Week: Elijah Hughes

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Inside the Loud House

Despite Battle’s game-winner against Georgetown and Brissett’s double-double in the victory over Northeastern, this week’s player of the week for Syracuse was Elijah Hughes. The East Carolina transfer played a key role in both wins this week for the Orange and has been a consistent scorer in addition to the trio of Howard, Battle, and Brissett. His presence was clearly missed when he sat out his red-shirt season a year ago. This week, Hughes averaged 16 points and shot 11-of-24 from the field, including 7-of-18 from three point range and was the second leading scorer in support of Brissett and Battle in both triumphs last week. Hughes has looked more comfortable in the back of the zone as the season has evolved and recoded a steal and a block against the Huskies and the Hoyas. With Hughes as a key contributor on both ends of the floor, Syracuse should remain in the Top 25 over the course of the coming weeks.

Up Next: Old Dominion

The Orange will have a week to decompress from the hysteria of the huge win over Georgetown to take their finals and prepare for their next opponent, the Old Dominion Monarchs. Tip-off is set for noon on Saturday. Old Dominion enters the contest with a record of 7-3 and are coming off a 79-69 victory over Fairfield on Sunday. The Monarchs are led by Ahmad Caver who is averaging 18.5 points, 4.3 rebounds, and 5.1 assists per game.