SYRACUSE, N.Y. — The Syracuse Orange men’s basketball team handled the Boston College Eagles by a final score of 76-56 on Saturday afternoon. The Orange move to 14-12 on the season and 8-7 in ACC play.
For the second straight game, Jim Boeheim went with Frank Anselem as the starting center.
Syracuse started strong offensively as Buddy Boeheim got the scoring going right away with a pull-up baseline jumper. Cole Swider followed suit with two jumpers of his own and Joe Girard buried his first triple attempt as Syracuse took a 9-4 lead at the first media timeout.
Benny Williams checked in along with Symir Torrence and Bourama Sidibe at the 12:51 mark, which marked the start of Syracuse’s bench contributions. Although a meager crowd was stretched thin across the upper levels of the Carrier Dome, it was an alert and engaged audience, which cheered exuberantly for Williams’ first rebound. It cheered even louder as Williams scored on a reverse layup inside.
Then, Bourama Sidibe muscled a bucket inside from the left block that lifted the score to 18-8, resulting in a Boston College timeout. The crowd lauded, noticeably loud, and Cole Swider was equally excited for that Sidibe score, bumping chests with his teammate on the way to the Syracuse bench.
Later, Torrence found Buddy for a a right-wing three for his second assist of the half. Boston College tried to answer and worked the ball around for a corner three, only to find a sprinting Sidibe rising up for an emphatic block. Jesse Edwards—out for the season with a left wrist fracture—flashed Sidibe a wide smile from the bench. Syracuse led 21-13 at the under eight media timeout.
Down the stretch of the first half, a Swider triple off a feed from Girard started an 11-0 run. Jimmy Boeheim hadn’t taken a shot until an offensive rebound and put-back gave him his first bucket. He scored three straight buckets around the rim. A Buddy Boeheim steal and breakaway layup gave the Orange a 34-15 lead.
In the first half, Boston College shot 1-15 from three with 12 turnovers as Syracuse took a 36-21 lead into the break.
Out of the break, Syracuse quickly pushed its lead to 20 as Buddy Boeheim scored on a pair of buckets, Jimmy Boeheim scored inside and Frank Anselem added an and-one opportunity. Torrence made an early substitution for Girard.
In the next four minute stretch Boston College whittled the Syracuse lead down to 12 and Jim Boeheim was forced to call a timeout at the 11:47 mark. Anselem had picked up his third foul and his replacement Sidibe picked up two quick ones for his third personal as well with just over ten minutes remaining.
But a Swider triple helped buoy the Orange and Girard, back in the game for Torrence, mirrored that effort — his second triple boosted Syracuse’s lead back up to 17, giving his team the separation needed to quell the run. It was tough sledding for the Eagles beyond that. Quinton Post and Buddy Boeheim traded buckets and Syracuse led 56-39 at the under eight minute media timeout.
Afterwards, Swider’s third three of the game gave Syracuse a 20 point lead. Then Jimmy Boeheim knocked down his only three attempt of the contest and grabbed a defensive rebound on the ensuing possession, giving him ten rebounds for his fourth double-double at Syracuse.
John Bol Ajak made his first appearance with just over four minutes remaining, joining Williams and Anselem. Down the stretch, Girard hit a floater and buried his fourth triple of the night to give Syracuse fans Taco Time. Paddy Casey replaced him after that.
Off a feed from Torrence, Casey scored on a breakaway layup and got fouled, converting the three point play on the final score of the game as Syracuse moved past Boston College 76-56.
Swider and Buddy Boeheim paced Syracuse with 18 points each while Girard scored 16 on four triples.
Syracuse returns home on Monday to take on the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets. That game tips at 7 p.m. ET from the Carrier Dome.