“Defensively we are very good. We make sure we are in every game. Offensively, it might just click like that. We are all working on it.”
C.J. Fair contributed 16 points and posted his 20th game in double figures this season. And sophomore point guard Michael Carter-Williams notched 10 points, five assists, and four steals.
The Orange outscored the Blue Demons in the paint 40-26 and 17-6 in points off turnovers. SU shot a very respectable 24 of 31 at the free throw line, while Depaul struggled hitting only 12 of 24. And the defense forced 18 turnovers, and registered 12 blocks and nine steals. Syracuse outrebounded DePaul 47-38, 22-15 on the offensive glass, in getting 21 second chance points.
Upset-minded DePaul built a 21-15 lead after Young executed a hard driving layup, Then the Orange proceeded to storm back with a big run that included a trio of three-point plays, while the defense became more dominant.
Fair threw down a two-handed dunk that tied the contest 24-24. Southerland and Triche each drilled 3-pointers, while Fair capped off a 20-3 run hitting one of his own, creating a nine-point halftime margin. DePaul ended the half missing their last seven shots, committed four turnovers, and had four shots blocked.
In the second half, the crowd of 23,380 fans grew more restless and alarmed as DePaul closed within 46-40. The Blue Demons stayed within close range as a result of SU's deteriorating shooting and turnovers that led to a couple of fast break conversions.
But the Orange retaliated when Triche sank four straight free throws and Fair converted a lob pass from Carter-Williams. Rakeem Christmas energized the offense with two powerful dunks as the Blue Demons would not be able to overcame a 59-42 deficit with 6:56 to play.
During intermission, all the seniors were given a roaring standing ovation for all that they had contributed to SU's basketball program. Triche and Southerland walked off the court with a smile on their faces as they each were rewarded with a Jersey encased in glass.