Orange Fizz – Daily Syracuse Recruiting News & Team Coverage


In Rak’s Final Syracuse Home Game, Offense Sputters to 12-point Loss

The senior center struggled against Virginia’s physical double-team.

On Senior Night, it was all about Rakeem Christmas before the game.  Once the game got under way, however, the story changed.  It became about Virginia’s surprising turnovers and sloppiness on the offensive side of the ball.
Everything changed after that on the way to a 59-47 Cavaliers victory, as they secured their second consecutive ACC regular-season title. The Orange falls to 18-12 and 9-8 in conference.
The game was nothing short of ugly in the early going with UVA turning the ball over 10 times in the first 11 minutes.  The Cavaliers were stuck on two points until the 6:05 mark of the first half, having not scored until there was 11:42 remaining.
After the ugly start, both teams picked it up in the final part of the first half. UVA came alive in the final seven minutes of the first half, scoring 21 points in that stretch.  They ended the half on an 11-0 run and led at half time, 23-20.
In the first two and a half minutes of the second half, UVA opened an 8-point lead thanks to a 24-5 run spanning both halves.
It got worse as the second half went on as the Cavaliers continued their hot shooting.  Ultimately, once Virginia gained a double-digit lead, the result was not in doubt and the Orange fell at home, 59-47.
The game was really won on the boards as UVA out-rebounded SU 42-20. Coach Jim Boeheim acknowledged the dominance of the Cavaliers saying, “They are clearly the second-best team in the country.”
The score took a back seat in the final minutes, as all eyes were on Rakeem Christmas in the final minutes.  When he was withdrawn from the game with one minute to go, the crowd got on its feet and saluted the big-man with a huge ovation. When asked about his Center Boeheim said, “He’s had a great career.  He’s done everything we’ve asked of him.”
While this loss concludes the home schedule for year, the Orange have one more game this Saturday against N.C. State at noon.
Posted: Logan Grossman
The Fizz is owned, edited and operated by Damon Amendolara. D.A. is an ’01 Syracuse graduate from the Newhouse School with a degree in Broadcast Journalism.


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