Boeheim’s Army looked a lot better today than it did on Saturday. No first-half offensive stall, plenty of solid defense, and a good job spreading the love on offense. There were plenty of positives, but of course some negatives as well. Let’s take a look at Boeheim’s Army’s Fizz Report Card from game 2 of The Basketball Tournament:
Keifer Sykes: A
Keifer Sykes was a huge surprise today. We all knew he had it in him but had yet to see it. Today he came out and proved it, his 17 points helped push Boeheim’s Army across the finish line first, making them 2-0 in TBT. He was clutch, draining a crucial three in BA’s time of need. Without Sykes, that’s not close to a win. SU fans should be very glad to have him.
Chris McCullough: B-
The former SU big drained the game-winning shot for Boeheim’s Army tonight but left some to be desired. 9 points, 2 assists, 1 rebound, marks the final box score for McCullough. The scoring numbers are fine but this team WILL need a bigger presence on the glass if it’s to continue to win. Yes, they won the rebound battle 35-30 but that was without production from bigs. If the centers on this team start to join the glass-crashing party this team will be in a much better spot.
DeAndre Kane: B+
Just 6 points, but DeAndre Kane anchored this defense. Aside from the third quarter in which Heartfire went on a 15-1 run, Boeheim’s Army put on a defensive clinic, much in part to Kane’s performance. The former Marshall-Iowa State player supplied a block and 7 rebounds for guys in Orange.
Tyrese Rice: B-
The stats don’t really show it, but without Tyrese Rice, this isn’t a win. Rice hit a three-pointer that defined clutchness. Though he shot just 3-12 from the floor, his court vision and hustle still provides more than enough for this team. He’s a leader and is quickly carving himself a role as a fan favorite due to that aforementioned hustle and knack for the clutch shot, as he’s come through at that moment two games in a row now.
DJ Kennedy: A
A near double-double for the St. Johns alum. 10 points, 8 rebounds for D.J. Kennedy in the win. Though he was clumsy at times such as losing the ball at a point where the team really couldn’t afford it down the stretch, the tournament’s best-ever player more than made up for it. His late-game putback notched Boeheim’s Army’s 66th points of the night (target score was 67).
Malachi Richardson: D
Was not the best showing for Malachi Richardson tonight, just 1 point, 0-5 from the floor. Not at all acceptable from the guy this team relies on to score every single night. Richardson will need to step up his play if this team is to make a deeper run, especially as the competition continues to get stronger.
C.J. Fair: B
C.J. saw just 13 minutes tonight, 8 in the first half, 5 in the second. He made use of those first 8, scoring efficiently, 2-3 from the floor for 7 points. He was quiet in the second half but that scoring input helped BA to finish the half strong. The SU great has plenty of talent, expect him to be more involved going forward.
Tyler Lydon: D
Tyler Lydon looked relatively weak today. Plenty of times in which he was bullied inside or was unable to snatch a rebound. He had a hard time scoring and had a hard time stopping the opposing team from scoring. Without Paschal Chukwu, this team will have to rely on him more than they intended when putting the roster together. If Lydon doesn’t improve he may contribute to its eventual downfall.
Eric Devendorf: B-
The heart and soul of Boeheim’s Army had a solid night. Just 2 points, but 4 rebounds helped spark the offense. They won’t really need Devo to play like it’s 2009 all over again, his presence on the bench and on the court is more than enough for this team.
The next opponent for Boeheim’s Army will be the winner of Always A Brave and Jackson TN Underdogs. Make sure to continue to check our Twitter @OrangeFizz as well as our website for coverage of The Basketball Tournament.