SU’s Defensive Stifles Boston College in 76-53 Win
SYRACUSE, NY – It was just two weeks ago, when Boston College (9-9,2-3) picked apart the Syracuse (11-7,3-2) 2-3 zone, shooting 57 percent from the field and 61 percent from behind the arc. On New Year’s Day in Chestnut Hill, the Eagles crushed the Orange 96-81 in what was a lackluster defensive performance for SU.
Saturday at the Carrier Dome, it was a much different story.
The SU defense forced 20 Boston College turnovers en route to a 76-53 win in a matinee affair.
The two players that killed the Orange from deep 13 days ago, were mostly silent in this game. Ky Bowman and Jerome Robinson shot 10-12 from three-point range and scored 52 points combined on New Year’s Day. Today those two shot only four of 20 from the field and scored 12 points.
SU Guard Tyus Battle said the 16 three pointers the Eagles made on Jan. 1 was too many for the Orange to give up. Battle mentioned closing in on the shooters was a game plan going into the matchup.
“We made that our main focus to limit the three’s they take, making It to the basket where our bigs can get them,” Battle said.
Graduate forward Andrew White said the activity level on the defensive end was in top form in the win.
“We got a lot of deflections, got our hands on a lot of basketballs and that kind of initiated some early offense for us,” White said.
Meanwhile, the offensive effort was led by Battle who scored a career-high 21 points in the win. The Freshman seemed more confident in his ability to take it to the rim.
“Just personally, I’m trying to be more aggressive,” Battle said. “My teammates have been doing an amazing job finding me for three’s and people have been closing out on me for easier drives.”
“He played great,” SU Sophomore Tyler Lydon said. “He wasn’t forcing anything, made all the right plays and knocked down shots. That’s huge for us.”
Overall four Orange players scored in double figures on Saturday. Lydon finished the contest with 16 points, his 12th double-figure scoring game of the season. Although the sophomore struggled with his shooting in the first half, he picked up the pace in the second frame, scoring 13 points including a ferocious slam off an offensive rebound that had the loud house going wild.
Syracuse looks to take its good all-around performance to Chapel Hill when it faces off against North Carolina. The Tar Heels are tops in the conference in scoring at 88 points per game and defeated 9th ranked Florida State by 13 on Saturday. The Martin Luther King game between the Orange and the Tar Heels is set to tip off Monday at 7 PM.