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SU basketball opens Big East play 3-0

Boeheim passes Knight; Orange get tough road wins

With 8:07 remaining, Rutgers took their last lead, 20-18, but Fair’s aggressive follow of a missed shot for an easy lay-up jump-started the Orange's scoring surge. Carter-Williams delivered consecutive baskets the second of which was an underhand scoop shot that gave SU an eight-point lead.

But that just started the run. Before it was all said and done, SU had exploded for a 21-0 run that ultimately sealed the fate of the opposition.

Fair blocked a shot and threw a perfect pass to Triche for a fast break conversion. With a defender in his face, Rakeem Christmas hit a bank shot off the glass. Southerland capped off the run with a transition 3-pointer, and the Orange ended the half with a lead of 39-20.

SU’s defense held Rutgers team scoreless over an eight-minute span at the end of the half. They missed their last seven shots, committed three fouls and had two shots that were blocked. Syracuse finished the half 14-for-29 (48.3 percent) from the field, while holding Rutgers to 27.6 percent.

We were playing well and we're down two,” Boeheim said. “I was getting ready for it to be a battle right down to the end, so I'm shocked at what happened during that period of time. We were playing well. Then we started playing even better.”

SU took full control of the second half, when Carter-Williams drilled a 3-pointersand Triche tallied in his fifth triple giving the hosts a 56-33 lead with 10:56 left, which stripped out any remaining drama.

The Orange's Jerami Grant and center Baye Keita scored four points apiece while playing a limited role, and both registered two second half blocked shots. Syracuse ended the evening with nine blocked shots and eleven steals.

Boeheim, pleased with this effort, was less happy in the two road games that followed. Last Sunday in Tampa, SU had to fight hard to beat South Florida 55-44, staying patient as the Bulls slowed the tempo down, which proved unsuccessful. Triche, with 20 points, and Southerland, with 17 points, accounted for most of the Orange’s production.

It was tougher on Wednesday night at Providence, where SU trailed most of the first half and deep into the second half before finally disposing of the Friars 72-66.

Cold from the outside (just three-for-21 from 3-point land), the Orange still rallied late as Fair led the way with 23 points and 11 rebounds. Carter-Williams added 17 points and six assists as Christmas put up 15 points and eight rebounds. Southerland managed 13 points.

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