The Syracuse Orange hosted its erstwhile rival St. Bonaventure tonight on Jim Boeheim's
200th birthday. St. Bonaventure -- traveling from almost Pennsylvania to play in the Carrier Dome -- put up a good fight against the Orange but ultimately fell short 79-66.
St. Bonaventure got out to a 19-8 lead early on Syracuse by knocking down outside shots and forcing Syracuse to turn the ball over. The Bonnies held a 22-17 rebounding edge over Syracuse at halftime with Coleman only playing six minutes. St. Bonaventure held its widest rebounding margin at 11 when Tyler Lydon was at center and when Tyler Roberson was out of the game.
Syracuse was able to regain control of the game in the second half. At roughly the nine minute mark, Lydon stepped out to drain a three to tie the game at 54. On the ensuing possession Cooney drove hard to the rim and finished with his off hand through contact for a three point play. With a 57-54, the Orange never looked back.
Second chance opportunities hurt Syracuse a great deal in this game; The Bonnies attempted 13 more shots than the Orange. Gbinije finished the night with 23 points, five assists, four steals and two rebounds. Kaleb Joseph did not come off the bench in the second half as Boeheim elected to go with Malachi Richardson at forward and Gbinije at the point.
Next on Syracuse's schedule is Elon this Saturday at the Dome. Elon is 1-1 with a win over Charlotte and a loss to Michigan. The Orange will see the former and possibly the latter of Elon's two opponent's in the Battle 4 Atlantis Tournament next week.