Saturday provided no shortage of drama as Syracuse and Georgetown met up for the 94th time. The Orange‚Äôs one point edge over the Hoyas came thanks to a Tyus Battle go-ahead jumper with 2.5 seconds left. The junior has had no shortage of moments that has driven head coach Jim Boeheim to say that Battle has ‚Äúprobably [made] as much or more [big shots] than anybody we’ve ever had here in late-game situations.‚Äù
From the Clemson buzzer beater to last year‚Äôs Georgetown game, Battle has done some pretty spectacular things since coming to campus. So where does Saturday rank in his all-time SU moments?
5. Battle spurns Michigan for Syracuse
Without this step, none of the rest of this list exists. Battle was originally committed to Michigan, but a late change of heart took him from Ann Arbor to central New York. This was one of the bigger wins in Orange recruiting in recent memory and has certainly led to the recent Orange success.
4. Battle catches fire to beat Georgetown Round 1
Saturday may have felt like d√©j√† vu for some. That‚Äôs because a year ago, Battle got hot in the second half and helped to force overtime and lead to an SU win. He made a big three to pull within 2 with about 90 seconds left in regulation. Then once overtime came, he made two of his final three pointers en route to a big comeback win over the Hoyas.
3. The Rally in Tally
This is the only part of the list that didn‚Äôt result in an Orange win, but it‚Äôs worth mentioning nonetheless. First off, Battle played all 50 minutes in this double overtime thriller. That helped elevate him to averaging a whopping 40.3 minutes per game. He coupled that with his best career performance of 37 points, including a three pointer with two defenders in his face to force OT.
2. Beating Clemson at the buzzer
Battle showed plenty of promise throughout his freshman year, but nothing was bigger than his clutch three at the horn on the road against the Tigers. Fighting an illness, Battle had been pretty quiet throughout the night. But when he caught the ball in the corner, he delivered one of the biggest shots of his young career in a huge road victory.
1. Saturday‚Äôs go-ahead jumper against Georgetown
While the long term magnitude of the game may not have been as high as an ACC game, the opponent certainly elevated the moment. Saturday‚Äôs game-winner, and second half in general, against the Hoyas showed a new level. After being challenged by Boeheim at halftime, Battle went out and dropped 21 points on 7-of-10 shooting from the field in the final 20 minutes. Those heroics will forever put him down in Syracuse lore, and Saturday was hopefully a sign of even more things to come.