Groundhog Day: Brissett, Howard lead Orange to ACC win over Pitt again

Groundhog Day: Brissett, Howard lead Orange to second ACC win over Pitt

Oshae Brissett finished with 18 points and 12 rebounds.
Published: February 2, 2019

The Syracuse Men’s basketball team capped off its three-game road trip with a big win over Pittsburgh. Oshae Brissett’s fifth double-double of the season lifted the Orange over the Panthers, 65-56, to finish their road trip 2-1.

Syracuse (16-6, 7-2) handed Pitt (12-10, 2-7) its fifth straight conference loss and its second loss at the hands of the Orange this season after a Jan. 19 win in the Carrier Dome.

After a slow start for both teams, Paschal Chukwu helped the Syracuse offense get going with four points in the first five minutes, equaling his average points per game. Chukwu’s early baskets and rebounds gave the Orange an advantage.

A three-pointer from Pitt’s Jared Wilson-Frame kept the Panthers within close reach of the lead at the beginning of the first half. Toward the end of the half, Syracuse started to heat up from three. Buddy Boeheim, Marek Dolezaj, Frank Howard and Elijah Hughes each made at least one shot from behind the arc.

The Orange finished the first half scoring five of 10 from the three-point line. Pittsburgh struggled offensively for most of the half — only scoring 22 points to Syracuse’s 35 — which is the lowest first-half score of the season from the Panthers.

A three from Xavier Johnson cut the lead to single digits for the first time since the beginning of the game and was the catalyst for the Panther’s 11-0 run to open the second half. Pitt caused turnovers and was able to get as close as three points. They outscored Syracuse 34-30 in the second half with a better shooting percentage than the Orange who struggled to make shots.

In contrast to the first half, Syracuse only knocked down two of 12 three-pointers in the second half. The two shots, however, were two of the biggest baskets of the game. To give the Orange a comfortable lead going into the final minutes of the game, Howard made two back-to-back threes. Syracuse closed out the game by getting offensive rebounds to milk the clock.

Brissett was the leading scorer for the Orange finishing with 18 points, along with 12 rebounds. This was Brissett’s fifth double-double of the season and the seventeenth of his career.

Behind him was Howard who finished with 15 points and made the biggest shots of the game.

“Frank hit the two threes, [and] that was really the game, I thought,” Syracuse Head Coach Jim Boeheim said.

After an underwhelming season from both Howard and Brissett so far, it seemed as though they finally got their grooves back offensively.

Tyus Battle, however, only finished with six points and didn’t score until midway through the second half.

The Orange will take on the No. 25 Florida State Seminoles in the Dome on Tuesday.

The last time the two played was in Tallahassee, where Syracuse lost a heartbreaker in double-overtime. This time the Orange are home and looking to build on their two-game winning streak.

Avatar for Jenna Elique

is a Broadcast and Digital Journalism freshman and sports reporter for The NewsHouse.