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Three takeaways from Syracuse’s 72-49 win over Northeastern

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Frankly, Brissett battled tonight.

NCAA Basketball: Northeastern at Syracuse Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports

The Syracuse Orange took care of business against an out-matched Northeastern Huskies team on Tuesday night. Syracuse rode strong play on the defensive end of the floor and dominated the offensive glass on its way to a 72-49 victory. Oshae Brissett was locked in as he totaled 21 points and 14 rebounds.

Oshae Brissett has found his groove

Northeastern had no one that could match Brissett’s combination of quickness and physicality. The sophomore was the best player on the floor on his way to his second double-double of the season. He’s averaging 17.8 points and 8.8 rebounds over his last four games. After some early season struggles, Brissett has been dominating.

Brissett had reigned in his three point attempts after a 1-9 showing against Oregon earlier this season. He was firing away again tonight and shot an inefficient 2-7 from deep. It would be difficult to fault Brissett from playing more aggressively in a night where he was scoring and carrying a large portion of Syracuse’s scoring load, but Syracuse would benefit from him continuing to stay in the range of three or four three point attempts per night.

NCAA Basketball: Northeastern at Syracuse Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports

Defense steps up

I noted before the game that the Syracuse defense would need to do a better job of defending shooters than it had against Cornell. The Orange rose to the occasion and held Northeastern, who was 19th in the country in three point shooting percentage coming into the game, to just 21.4 percent shooting on 28 three point attempts.

The Syracuse guards did a much better job of not allowing the ball to the high post and stayed disciplined to locate shooters even when it did. Northeastern’s best three point shooting threat, Jordan Roland, was visibly frustrated at times with his inability to find good shots.

Bench contributions

Syracuse had major contributions come off its bench including a season-high 11 points from Buddy Boeheim and productive minutes from Jalen Carey and Marek Dolezaj. Buddy Boeheim shot 3-7 from beyond the arc, but the more important takeaways was that he looked confident on the floor for the first time since Syracuse’s exhibition games.

Jalen Carey, whose stat line wasn’t flashy, played well at the top of the 2-3 zone and helped Syracuse move the ball to beat Northeastern’s zone schemes. Carey stepped up and ran the show for the Orange as Frank Howard was given extra rest.

Similar to Carey, Marek Dolezaj played a key role for the Orange in his work from the high post. Dolezaj’s presence from the high post against Northeastern’s zone allowed Oshae Brissett to man the baseline and dominate the offensive glass.

On a night in which Tyus Battle and Frank Howard combine for four points on 1-12 shooting, Syracuse needed the bench to step up and it delivered.

For Syracuse basketball analysis, news and more, follow Dylan on twitter @dfines31.