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Syracuse 99, Boston U 77: Thompson and Gillon pace Orange in win

After a slow start, Gillon and Thompson took control of the tempo on the way to the team’s sixth win of the young season.

NCAA Basketball: Boston U at Syracuse Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

The Syracuse Orange found their offensive rhythm again after a lackluster performance at Madison Square Garden against UConn on Monday, defeating Boston University, 99-77.

From the first tip, Boston University seemed to have prepared for the looks they were going to see from the Syracuse defense. Senior center Justin Alston got it going with a dunk to let the Carrier Dome crowd know the Terriers were here to play. Grad-transfer Andrew White answered with a three-pointer before BU scored again on the other end. The Terriers showed poise as they went on a 10-2 run over a little less than a three-minute stretch to take an eight-point lead with just under 13 minutes left in the half.

Head coach Jim Boeheim had to call a timeout to calm his guys down. The Orange promptly brought BU’s lead back down to two with two threes courtesy of grad-transfer John Gillon and freshman Taurean Thompson. The two would help pace Syracuse for the remainder of the half, scoring 14 and 12 points respectively. They reclaimed the lead with six minutes and 21 seconds to go and never looked back. Just before the half ended, BU’s junior guard Cheddi Mosely hit a three to cut the lead back down to six.

Many times a shot at the end like Mosely’s would give that team the momentum, but instead, the Orange poured it on as they went on a 17-0 run at the beginning of the half to all but seal the deal. From the 11:27 mark onward, Syracuse maintained a 20-plus-point lead.

Not to go unmissed, Terriers junior guard Cedric Hankerson had a career day against the Orange. He sunk 10 three-pointers and four free throws for 34 points. His 10 threes were the most ever scored by an opponent against the Orange. They also tied the record for the most scored by an opposing player in Division 1 this season.

Boeheim subbed the regulars in for the walk-ons with 55.5 seconds to go. To the delight of the crowd, Sean Belby drove to the basket and scored. It was the much-needed exclamation point on the young season.