Just Like Old Times: Syracuse Basketball Takes Out St. John’s in New York City

The Orange lost a big lead to St. John’s in Madison Square Garden, but pulled out the win with C.J. Fair.

via Kick Swag


Syracuse beat St. John’s 68-63 in its return to Madison Square Garden as an ACC school, its unofficial home away from the Carrier Dome for decades. The Orange was in control throughout the first half. DaJuan Coleman and Rakeem Christmas were able to score down low, and Syracuse got to the basket with ease. Tyler Ennis dominated the first half with 13 points, three assists and just one turnover.


In the second half, the Red Storm came out firing. Coleman played just 1:47 at the beginning of the half. Ennis didn’t play as well, turning the ball over a few times. Cooney didn’t attempt a shot and C.J. Fair didn’t score as well as he did in the first half. Add the nerves inside Madison Square Garden, the Orange saw a lead – once as big as 13 points – vanish. St. John’s came out of halftime with a lot of energy and played much better than it did in the first half.


After the game, Jim Boeheim talked about the struggling interior play. Boeheim said that Coleman started well but then got into foul trouble and played poor defense. That said, Coleman had four points and four rebounds in the limited playing time he got, giving the Orange the low-post presence it needed.


Boeheim was very high on Fair and Ennis after the game. He said Fair has become the top man on the team, and opponents knows that, yet Fair is still able to put up points. Boeheim said the team would be 7-3 at best if Ennis played like a typical freshman and not how he has played so far this year. Boeheim also said that Ennis could be the best freshman point guard he has ever had, adding, “I’ve had a few pretty good ones.” Some pretty high praise from a Hall of Fame head coach who rarely throws around compliments to freshmen.


Ennis and Fair both finished with 21 points. Fair came up big knocking down a few jumpers after the under-4 timeout to get the Orange the lead. And today proved once again that the Orange will only go as far as Ennis takes them. In the first half, the freshman was phenomenal and the team had a 12-point lead at the half. But Ennis struggled for much of the second half, and as a result so did the Orange.


But Syracuse finished strong, closing out the Red Storm and moving to 10-0 on the season. It was a battle down the stretch, but after the under-four minute timeout, Syracuse started to pull away. The Orange rode on the back of ACC Preseason Player of the Year Fair, who hit big buckets when the Orange needed them most. Fair finished with 21 points and really led the Orange down the stretch to a nailbiting 68-63 win over St. John’s.


Posted by: Seth Goldberg

13 Comments on this Post

  1. Cuse Don't Luse

    Next Year if everyone stays: Ennis (1), Cooney(2), Gbinije(1-3), Patterson(2), Joseph(1,2), Johnson(3), Roberson (3,4), McCullough (3,4) Grant (3,4) Coleman (5) Christmas (4,5) Obokoh (5) thats 12 scholarship players and an 8 man rotation is what we usually use. Obokoh will likely take Keitas spot in the big man rotation but with coleman and christmas being a jr and sr expect a small role then the wings will likely be grant and mccullough with roberson/johnson coming off the bench as the 3rd forward. The guards will be Ennis and Cooney and joseph or gbinije will likely be the highest priority of the bench.

    Without Grant, Cooney, and Christmas/Coleman going pro we will be the deepest and best team in the country, but my guess is that patterson, roberson, johnson or gbinije will get lost in the rotation and want to transfer.

    As much as I want Grant to stay, when one chapter ends the next chapter begins which I think will be similar to the Dion Waiters situation he was stuck behind upper clansmen and didn’t get much playing time and then his chapter began and it was great but then he did the same thing to MCW who also considered transferring but didn’t and he was great. My point is that we are on top of the world right now as a program with the talent we bring in but when one of these kids says fuck this I want to play it will be our demise because then we wont have that elite next chapter. WE ARE CONCERNED WITH PLAYING THE VETERAN AND THAT WILL BE OUR DEMISE. In college basketball talent beats veteran teams with the exception of the start of the year when they are learning the college game and march madness and while veteran teams make tournament pushes the champion is the team with the most talented 2 or 3 players who also has a good supporting cast think Melo, Mcnamara, and Warrick or Louisville’s Smith Siva and Dieng last year or kentuckys davis, jones, and kidd-ghilchrist the year before so I will leave you with my final thoughts that when it comes down to it, if you want kaleb joseph to stay then he will need to be ahead of gbinije in the rotation one day we will lose a crucial player and in a sport where u have 12 scholarship players on a team at once this can hurt u significantly so lets hope we have some guys go pro this year and i wish we would start going after the more elite recruits like the MCculloughs instead of the Tyler Lydons because it messes up the natural flow of recruits that the best schools have

  2. BigDiptakesNoLip

    These situations usually play themselves out! The best kid will play. SU’s 6th man is most likely a pro player who is multidimensional. That stated, a team drives off winning & team success, there hasn’t been lockerroom incidents, AND THERE WILL BE NONE…. its kinda a dumb hypothetical?

    A. Bring all the talent
    B. Like Richardson & Lydon ’15
    C. Having four pro guards is a good problem – waiters mcw Triche scoop
    D. If you don’t do it the SU way, transfer, Waiters DIDN’T?
    E. I want kids who want the ball…

    Go Su….

  3. Cuse don't luse

    Big Dip triche and scoop weren’t nba guards which is why mcw and waiters did contemplate transferring because they were/are nba guards sitting behind euro league talent

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