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Monday, Jan 16, 2017 at 11:32 pm

SU gives Tar Heels Coach Roy Williams his 800th win

By Taryn Varricchio

CHAPEL HILL, NORTH CAROLINA — Syracuse (11-8, 3-3) traveled down south to face its first ranked opponent of the conference this season. The orange took on the Tar Heels, after coming off a successful match up against Boston College over the weekend. That gave the Orange its third win of its last four face offs. That high wouldn’t last long.

North Carolina (17-3, 5-1) hosted the Orange, carrying momentum from its defeat against then #9 Florida State on Saturday. Coach Roy Williams headed into Monday night with four consecutive ACC wins and just one game short of 800 career wins. Coach Williams is the second fastest coach to reach this milestone in college basketball.

“He’s one of the top coaches that have ever coached in college basketball. There’s no debate there,” Coach Jim Boehiem said.

As for the Orange, the team fell short in controlling its opponent on the glass. Syracuse allowed 18 offensive rebounds and 26 defensive boards versus its own 24 total rebounds.

“Offensively, I thought we did a lot of positive things in this game. We needed a couple more plays and a couple less turnovers. What we really needed was more defensive rebounds,” Boeheim said.

Sophomore Tyler Lydon led the team with a game-high 26 points, followed by freshman Andrew White with 15 points. With four first time starters and one sophomore, Coach Boeheim recognizes the inexperience and youth in his team. However, he says this game proves his roster is taking a step in the right direction, especially after the team’s string of losses on the road in December.

“I think every game is a stepping stone. We haven’t played well on the road and this was our toughest road game, and by far, our best,” Boeheim said.

The Orange will work to improve its play outside the Carrier Dome in South Bend, Indiana against Notre Dame next Saturday.