SYRACUSE, N.Y. — For the first time all season, the Syracuse Orange men’s basketball team won three straight games after dispatching the Louisville Cardinals by a final score of 92-69 inside the Carrier Dome.
Louisville was without leading scorer and rebounder Malik Williams for the second consecutive game.
Syracuse started the game hot on offense with 4-4 shooting thanks to a Jimmy Boeheim bucket down low, two Jesse Edwards scores inside and a Buddy Boeheim triple, but three turnovers had the Orange up just one at the first media timeout.
From there, Syracuse made a concerted effort to look to Edwards down low and he rewarded his teammates’ trust with two more buckets inside—including a three-point play—plus an assist to Cole Swider in the corner for a wide open three. After, Joe Girard hit back to back 3s to give Syracuse a 25-14 lead and the team never looked back the rest of the way.
Benny Williams replaced Jimmy Boeheim at the 12-minute mark. Symir Torrence and Frank Anselem checked in one minute later. While the bench failed to score initially, the defense continued to improve with fresh legs as Anselem grabbed two rebounds.
Later, Buddy Boeheim’s third three of the half moved him past Andy Rautins for second on the all-time three-point makes list at Syracuse with 283, trailing only Gerry McNamara (400). Girard matched Boeheim’s three first-half triples while Cole Swider made a pair from range to continue Syracuse’s hot shooting.
Syracuse went into the break with a 43-26 lead shooting 16-29 (55.2%) from the floor, including 8-15 (53.3%) from three. Louisville, on the other hand, was just 10-30 (33.3%) from the floor and 2-16 (12.5%) from three.
Syracuse continued to shoot the leather out of the ball in the second half as Buddy picked up right where he left off, knocking down two 3s — his fourth and fifth from beyond the arc — and Edwards had a dunk and layup inside to give the Orange a 21 point lead at the 15:18 mark.
From there, Syracuse continued to look inside to Edwards with mismatches down low. Girard fed him on the roll and Edwards flushed the proceeds with two hands. On a switch, Buddy was trying to feed him with a defender fronting. The Carrier Dome crowd yelled “give it to him!” and although Buddy couldn’t hear the crowd noise, he created the angle and obliged. You know the rest. Edwards scored. Then, another layup served up courtesy of Girard, who later made a three to force a timeout (which was later reviewed and ruled a two).
With 10:30 left in the game, Edwards picked up his first foul. Michael Veley, the public address announcer, made mention of that to the crowd and they cheered at that designation. As Anselem came in and replaced Edwards, Syracuse fans cheered louder for the Netherlands big man who finished his day early with 19 points, 8 rebounds, 3 assists, 3 steals and 2 blocks.
With 69 points, Syracuse fans began chanting “We want tacos!” and Jimmy Boeheim appeared very determined to authorize that wish, craftily driving to his right with the finish to push the lead to 71-42. Cole Swider followed that up with his third triple of the day as Syracuse extended the lead 74-48 with eight minutes to go.
Jim Boeheim elected to give his bench some extra run down the stretch as Anselem, Torrence and Williams checked in at the under eight minute media timeout. John Bol Ajak checked in shortly thereafter. Paddy Casey followed, heading to the scorer’s table at the 6:10 mark.
In the final stretch, Torrence had a layup and three late and Williams made three of four free throws before the walk-ons (plus Chaz Owens) checked in with 1:17 to play. Syracuse cruised to its third consecutive league win.
Buddy Boeheim and Jesse Edwards led Syracuse in scoring with 19 points each. Girard had 15 points and 4 assists. Jimmy Boeheim had 14 points and 5 helpers while Swider had 11 points and 5 rebounds.
Syracuse shot 32-58 (55.2%) overall and 12-23 (52.2%) from three. The Orange owned the points in the paint battle 36-24.
Syracuse hits the road to take on Boston College this Tuesday. That game tips at 8 p.m. ET from Conte Forum and airs on the ACCN.