In the battle of the Boeheims, the Syracuse Orange came away with the 63-55 win over the Cornell Big Red. After Syracuse secured an important win over Ohio State on Wednesday, SU returned home to the Carrier Dome to square off against in-state foe Cornell. The Big Red made the Syracuse faithful sweat this one out, but ultimately the Orange were able to come away with its third straight win.
After leading the Orange to a win against the Ohio State Buckeyes last Wednesday, Tyus Battle stayed hot on offense as he got his shot early with a layup off the tip, and he stayed aggressive looking for his shot all night.
The junior guard had 14 first half points (26 total), as he was able to create enough separation off the dribble to get his classic pull up jumper going. Syracuse is going to need this version of Battle all year long if they want to compete against the top ACC teams.
The Big Red wouldn’t let Battle’s hot start take them out of the game, as Cornell was able to create a 17-13 lead on a Jimmy Boeheim three (he finished with nine points)—prompting his Dad, coach Jim Boeheim, to call a timeout. Buddy Boeheim was able to match his brother’s long ball with one of his own (he finished with three points), helping Syracuse close the gap to 19-17.
A few strong drives from Oshae Brissett helped the Orange regain the lead in the first half, as he was able to either finish around the rim or get to the line with ease. With minimal help from Frank Howard and Elijah Hughes in the first half (the two combined for zero points in the first 20 minutes of play), Brissett was able to pick up the slack, finishing the half with 13 points (19 total).
A Matt Morgan three prompted coach Boeheim to remove his jacket, but Battle eased everyone’s nerves with five quick points to end the half, giving the Orange a 33-24 lead heading into halftime.
Syracuse started the second half on a positive note, forcing a shot clock violation on defense, and then getting a nice finish inside from Paschal Chukwu. Battle brought his strong scoring from the first half into the start of the second half, hitting one of his four threes on the night to give Syracuse the 39-24 lead with 17:36 remaining.
Cornell kept it close however, as a couple threes helped them cut the Syracuse lead to 41-36. Brissett eased everyone’s nerves with a triple to help Syracuse end a 12-2 Cornell run. Cornell wouldn’t go away quietly though, as Matt Morgan’s hot perimeter shooting helped Cornell take a 48-47 lead.
With things really starting to get bad for the Orange, Battle hit a huge three to give Syracuse the 52-50 lead. A breakaway layup from Battle gave the Orange a four-point lead, and Cornell couldn’t muster up another run to retake the lead. While he struggled on the night, Frank Howard hit an important three late that all but sealed the deal for SU before hitting free throws down the stretch to close out the game.
Syracuse will look to make it four wins in a row with a win on Tuesday in the Carrier Dome against the Northeastern Huskies. That game tips at 6:45 p.m. ET.