Syracuse defeats Stephen F. Austin 59-44 to advance to the second round. This wasn’t the greatest of efforts from Syracuse, but they were able to get by with their better size and skill. Here is some analysis and some interesting facts from this game:
Syracuse finished with 21 turnovers against SFA, who forced an average of 15 turnovers on the season. Syracuse was sloppy with the ball all game, something Jim Boeheim is sure to point out to his players. This was the seventh time the Orange had 20+ turnovers in a game this season. Amazingly, the Orange are 6-1 in those games (the loss at Providence being the only blemish).
Jonny Flynn had 7 turnovers, matching his season high (low?) in that department. Similarly to the team turnover note above, Syracuse has won all three of those games (home vs. Rutgers, UConn in B.E.T. and SFA today).
Paul Harris was a monster on the boards today, getting 16 rebounds. It was his 11th double-digit rebound game of the year, and was second only to his 22 rebound effort against UConn in the B.E.T. (in that game he only had 8 rebounds in regulation). His defensive rebound rate (a measure of how effective a player is at rebounding) was 25.1%, which means he grabbed a quarter of all of Syracuse’s defensive rebounds today. That would rank him 17th in the country if he had done that over the course of a season (his season percentage is 17.9%- 308th in the country).
Syracuse was great in the first half, shooting 62.5% of their shots. The second half was atrocious by comparison, as the Orange shot only 32.3%. Their effective FG% was 47.3% (down from 64.6% in the first half) compared to their season eFG% of 54.4.
Syracuse had their worst game of the season in terms of outside shooting, hitting only 2 of 16 (12.5%) from three. Their previous low was 3-14 (21.4%) vs. West Virginia in February. I don’t know if it was trying to shoot in a new arena or if they still didn’t have their legs after the B.E.T., but they will have to shoot better from behind the arc if they want to advance any further.
Syracuse was able to get inside on the smaller Lumberjacks:
The biggest threat from SFA today was supposed to come from their back-to-back Southland Conference Players of the Year, Josh Alexander and Matt Kingsley. The Syracuse zone worked well against SFA today, but was especially effective against the big two:
|Rest of team||13-45||28.9||34|