Syracuse, NY (WBNG Binghamton) Fourth-ranked Syracuse (9-0) built a 24-point halftime lead and used five double-digit scorers to ease past visiting Binghamton (2-7) 93-65 Saturday night from the Carrier Dome. It was the 48th consecutive home win against non-conference foes for the undefeated Orange.
The Bearcats gave their contingent of fans plenty to cheer about in the game’s opening minutes as the heavy underdogs took an 11-3 lead to begin the game. But the size and athleticism of Syracuse soon took hold as the hosts fashioned a 19-0 run born of heavy defensive pressure. Led by sophomore guard Jordan Reed, who tallied a game-high and season-high 26 points, BU kept battling, however, and the Bearcats played the Orange within four points over the final 20 minutes (39-35).
“We competed for sure,” head coach Tommy Dempsey said. “That’s a great team and their press bothered us obviously … but we fought through the entire second half and didn’t hang our heads. In the second half we held our own against a team considerably bigger than us. We rebounded pretty well and to get 32 free throws against Syracuse impressed me. That shows that we tried to enforce our will. There was no quit in us.”
Reed scored 13 points in each half and added seven rebounds and two steals. He hit 6-of-10 from the floor and 13-of-14 from the line.
“Jordan was terrific,” Dempsey said. “It was a big time effort tonight. There’s a reason he’s a first team all-conference player … he can compete in this environment and showed what kind of player he is tonight.”
Freshmen Marlon Beck II and Nick Madray added 14 and 11 points, respectively. The 5-foot-11 Beck chipped in six rebounds in 39 minutes of work. Madray hit three three-pointers and added four rebounds and two assists in 35 minutes.
Binghamton continued to start one of the youngest lineups in the country with four freshmen (Beck II, Madray, Yosef Yacob, Magnus Richards) and a sophomore (Reed).
“They were patient and moved the ball on offense,” Syracuse head coach Jim Boeheim said of the Bearcats. “They played well.”
C.J. Fair led Syracuse with 19 points and 6-foot-9 center DaJuan Coleman added a double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds. Trevor Cooney hit 5-of-9 three-pointers for 17 points. The Orange held a 45-36 advantage on the boards, though BU was even over the final 20 minutes. Syracuse made 13-of-36 from beyond the arc.
After committing 11 turnovers in the first half, BU trimmed that stat to seven in the second period.
“We certainly aren’t the first team that struggled against their zone,” Dempsey said. “That run in the first half was significant but I thought we settled in after a while and we had a tenacity that I liked.”
The Bearcats were strong out of the gate, putting a surprising 11-0 run on the Orange and keeping the crowd quiet by staking an 11-3 lead four minutes into the game. But after hitting just 2-of-5 to start, Syracuse drilled seven of its next eight and used the 19-0 run to establish control. A Cooney three capped the run and gave the Orange a 21-11 lead with 12:46 left in the first half. Beck hit a pair of jumpers to pull BU back within single digits, 24-15, with 10:51 to play but SU scored seven straight points – five courtesy of the free throw line – and the hosts were on their way. The Orange hit 9 three-pointers and turned 11 BU turnovers into 22 points.
Binghamton continues its stretch of four straight road games with an away contest at Monmouth next Saturday night.
(Courtesy: Binghamton University Athletics)