Inside the Carrier Dome for the first time following last week's 2K Classic, the Syracuse Orange earned their fourth victory of the season on Tuesday night with a 70-37 win against the Loyola (MD) Greyhounds.
Loyola shot only 19 percent from the field and needed more than 10 minutes of game time before scoring a point, and while I'd like to tell you that was a result of Syracuse's effort defensively, the reality is that Loyola's offense was pretty self-destructive throughout. It's a trend that's followed the Greyhounds all season long, and they've now scored 45 points or fewer in three consecutive games.
The Orange got off to a bit of a slow start and held a modest 28-16 lead at halftime, thanks in-part to shooting struggles of their own -- they attempted and missed seven three-pointers prior to the intermission. But things would get better in the second half, when Syracuse made 62 percent of its shots, had 14 assists as a team and outscored Loyola by 21.
Rakeem Christmas had 18 points, nine rebounds and six blocks, while Chris McCullough (17 points) and Trevor Cooney (13 points) also scored in double figures. Kaleb Joseph played a little better than he did during the team's trip to New York City, finishing with seven assists and just two turnovers. B.J. Johnson, starting in place of Tyler Roberson, filled up the stat sheet with six points, nine rebounds, three assists, two steals, and one block.
It certainly wasn't pretty, but Syracuse is now 4-1 ahead of Friday's meeting with Holy Cross, which beat Harvard earlier this month. There's plenty more recapping still to come, but for now, leave your reaction in the comments here.