Mar 3, 2012; Syracuse, NY, USA; Syracuse Orange players hoist the Big East regular season championship trophy after the game against the Louisville Cardinals at the Carrier Dome. Richard Mackson-US PRESSWIRE
30-1 overall. 17-1 in the Big East. 19-0 at home.
Add it all up and you've got the most accomplished regular season in the history of Syracuse Orange basketball.
The No. 2 Syracuse Orange wrapped up their unbelievably-successful regular season with a 58-49 win over the No. 19 Louisville Cardinals in the Dome on Senior Day. Amongst the many things the win completed was:
- A 30-1 regular season, the first time SU has ever won 30 games during the season, not including post-season.
- A 17-1 Big East record, tying the 1996 UConn team for the most wins ever by a conference team.
- 19-0 at home, the first time since 2003 (ahem).
- Syracuse's fifth-ever 30-win season, all under Jim Boeheim.
- A season sweep of Louisville for the first time ever.
- They put themselves one win shy of the most in a single season ever by a Syracuse team (31 in 1987).
- And they did it in front of 33,205 fans, the 5th-largest crowd in Carrier Dome history (Both this and the UConn game were among the Top 5 home game attendances ever).
The Orange won in typical fashion this year. Despite struggling offensively early, their defense clamped down and make it impossible for Louisville to take advantage. The Orange held the Cardinals to a season-low 49 points.
It might have been Senior Day but junior Brandon Triche pulled out his best performance for this one, scoring 18 points as well as four assists and four rebounds in 28 minutes. The key, as always for Triche, is for him to keep the momentum going into the next game.
Dion Waiters looked like the Dion Waiters from a month ago on the night, making some crazy moves to the basket and hitting clutch threes en route to 13 points and four rebounds.
James Southerland proves that, when he's on his game, he's an important cog in the machine. In 20 minutes of action, Southie scored seven, blocked three shots and grabbed four boards. He also seemed to be all over the place in terms of defense.
You can always put Fabricio Melo down for at least one goaltend and one drawn charge. He bookended the game with both as well as scoring four, blocking four shots and grabbing eight boards in 34 minutes of action.
Senior Kris Joseph went out with an 11-point, four-rebound, two-assist performance and played a game-high 38 minutes.
There was something poetic about Scoop Jardine not scoring at all in his final game in the Dome. Not because he was erratic shooting, but because he seemed fine with it, preferring to defer to his teammates that were feeling it. His leadership journey is almost complete.
Now it's on to the Big East Tournament where the Orange will await either the UConn Huskies, West Virginia Mountaineers or DePaul Blue Demons (but probably not them). SU has until Thursday before it's first game so there's time to reflect on the regular season that was and prepare now for the real season...the post-season.