SYRACUSE, N.Y. - The Syracuse University men's basketball team forced key turnovers late and rallied from a second half deficit in order to top Northeastern 62-56 in a tight battle at the Carrier Dome, Wednesday.
The Orange, coming off a 101-62 blowout over Boston College on Saturday for its largest ACC victory in program history, struggled from the field throughout the game, shooting just under 32 percent as a team.
"The danger with the game against Boston College is that everybody thinks that we're there," said Syracuse head coach Jim Boeheim following Wednesday's win over Notheastern. "That game has no relationship to reality. That's a game you just forget, it means nothing"
Buddy Boeheim, in his second game back from coronavirus close-contact quarantine, shot just 1-for-12, scoring two points, while Alan Griffin, second to Boeheim in scoring so far this year, went 0-for-4 with no points in the contest.
"Alan was in a funk from the opening tip," said Coach Boeheim. "While he was on the court we lost. He just wasn't in the game in any way, shape, or form. Buddy is not ready for that contact yet, he's just not back there."
After leading 32-31 at halftime, 'Cuse, at one point, was 1-for-14 from the field in the second half, and trailing before a few timely steals and key plays down the stretch pushed the Orange into the lead just after the midway point of the second.
"We're going to have some bad shooting games, and tonight is a perfect example," said Coach Boeheim. "But when you don't play well, you don't shoot well, we didn't turn it over. We forced them into some turnovers with the press and some other things that we did, which was just enough to win the game."
Joseph Girard III, who seems to be finding his shot in the last couple of games, lead the way with 21 points. Quincy Guerrier had another solid outing with a double-double yet again, netting 18 points and 16 rebounds.
According to Coach Boeheim, outside of the offense generated by those two, and Marek Dolezaj, who chipped in 14 points, defense was what won them the game.
"We had 10 steals, if we get four steals we lose the game," he said. "Just like the Bryant game, we could have lost this game very easily and we were able to win them. So you've got to learn from it."
The Orange improve to 5-1 and will be in action next on Saturday to face Buffalo at 6 p.m.