Syracuse Men’s Basketball Snags Second Win of the Season
By Zach Lang
CitrusTV Basketball Reporter
SYRACUSE, N.Y. – No. 16 Syracuse (2-0, 0-0 Atlantic Coast) showed signs of a breakdown on Saturday in the Carrier Dome, but the Orange pulled out an 84-70 win against Morehead State (1-2, 0-0 Ohio Valley).
Tyus Battle led the Orange in scoring, finishing with 23 points and 3 assists. Two players recorded double-doubles for Syracuse: Oshae Brissett posted 17 points and 13 rebounds and Paschal Chukwu added 14 points and 10 rebounds. Forward Elijah Hughes had a strong game with 21 points following his seven-point performance against Eastern Washington.
“We’re doing the best we can with the situation we’re in,” SU head coach Jim Boeheim said. “It’s like a football team playing without a quarterback. It’s not easy.”
While senior guard Frank Howard continues to sit out with an injury, Boeheim said there is no status update on when he will return to the lineup.
Morehead State starting guard Jordan Walker led all players with 24 points. The Eagles kept pace with the Orange, but failed to take the lead at any point. The team shot just 58.3 percent from the free throw line.
The Orange struggled from deep, only making 18.8 percent of their three-point attempts. Most of Syracuse’s struggles occurred in the first half, which the team finished leading by just six.
In the first 20 minutes of play, the Orange had a staggering 11 turnovers compared to the Eagles’ three. Brissett and freshman guard Jalen Carey committed three each.
Battle especially struggled to get going in the first half. The leader for the Orange was just two of nine from the field with five points in 19 minutes. Both of his made field goals came with under three minutes remaining in the half.
Despite early fouls, Paschal Chukwu kept the Orange ahead early. He recorded three blocks and made both shots in the paint early on, adding three rebounds as well. Brissett led all scorers at the half with 14 points, but scored just three in the second half.
The Orange continue play in the 2K Classic Tournament on Thursday when they face old Big East rival Connecticut. Tipoff is set for 7:00 PM from Madison Square Garden in New York City, New York.