Syracuse men suffer first conference loss after Georgia Tech sweeps

SU men suffer first conference loss after Georgia Tech sweeps

Georgia Tech went on a 22-7 scoring run in the first eight minutes of the second half to dominate the Orange.
Published: January 13, 2019
SU vs Georgia Tech
Buddy Boeheim, a freshman guard, drives down the lane.

The Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets flustered and stagnated the offense of the Orange, forced turnovers, and went on to rout the Orange by a score of 73-59.

It was a game that most experts and fans had as a win for Syracuse (11-5, 2-1). However, Georgia Tech (10-6, 2-1) must have missed the memo that they were supposed to lose.

The Orange did not start the game well and didn’t score until the 17:43 mark of the first half. That was indicative of the entire night for Syracuse. They could not buy a basket throughout most of the game. Orange forward Oshae Brissett did not score his first basket until the second half. Tyus Battle, a usual leading scorer, only scored 11 points and went 3-12 in field goals.

As a team the Orange made only seven of 33 three-point shots, and they could not attack the basket because of the match-up zone that the Yellow Jackets ran. A 31.6 shooting percentage in field goals didn’t help the Orange either. This zone made it difficult for the Orange to get the ball inside. The offense became stagnant.

“Again, we have not shot the ball to the level we need to,” Syracuse Head Coach Jim Boeheim said. “It’s difficult for us to score inside, and I thought we got good three looks, but when you’re not making them it’s not very pretty.”

Alternative Text
Tyus Battle, a junior guard, makes an attempt at a dunk.

The Orange may have been looking past the Yellow Jackets to their date with the Duke Blue Devils on Monday evening, but the Georgia Tech had their focus on the task at hand. They came ready to play and forced seven costly turnovers (19 turnovers total) from the Orange. They were able to use a faster pace to get open threes against the zone of the Orange.

By speeding the game up, the Yellow Jackets were able to take advantage of slow defenders and hit two open three-point shots — and that opened the flood gates. They were able to go on a 22-7 scoring run in the first eight minutes of the second half that was so overwhelming, it took the Orange until late in the second quarter to mount even a semblance of a comeback.

Georgia Tech center Jose Alvarado scored a game-high 19 points and sunk all three of his three-point attempts. He was also part of an inside attack that the Orange just could not solve. It didn’t matter who was guarding Alvarado or his teammates, whenever the ball got inside the paint the Orange could not stop the man from scoring or going to the free throw line.

“They played good defense and move the ball well and played well tonight,” Syracuse junior guard Battle said. “We’ll look at the film and correct things.”

The Yellow Jackets shot better and outhustled the Orange. Syracuse never seemed to be into the match-up.

With a date against Duke coming on Monday, the Orange have a short time to shore up their defense in the paint.