Orange Fizz


Fizz Report Cards: Syracuse Handles Virginia Tech, 84-71

That’s three wins in a row for Syracuse. With March approaching, the Orange are getting hot at the right time. What once looked like hopeless tournament prospects are now still bleak, but at least give SU fans a chance to dream. An 84-71 win over Virginia Tech is the latest step on the climb, giving the Orange a 14-2 home record in the regular season.

Let’s hand out some report cards: 

Judah Mintz: A

One of the better, more efficient games Mintz has played this season. That seems to be a critique that he gets often. He’ll give you 15+ points every night, but sometimes it takes him 18 shots to get there. Tonight, it was 29 points. 

Not the case tonight. He was efficient, finishing with 10-17 from the floor. Most importantly, when it mattered most, Mintz took over. Late in the game, as Virginia Tech made its comeback, Mintz wasn’t interested in getting rid of the ball, nor should he have been.

You can call him too ball dominant, and at times he is, but when he plays like this, he’s Syracuse’s best option and it’s not close.

Quadir Copeland: B+

It’s always a show with Copeland, even when it doesn’t need to be. He dazzled the crowd in the first half with acrobatic shots around the rim, and in the second with fake behind the back passes that didn’t lead to anything tangible.

No matter whether or not he’s producing, he’s always fun to watch. That’s not always necessary. There’s a balance between flair and carelessness, and while Copeland probably doesn’t cross that line, he gets close sometimes. He played very well, he’s had a good stretch, but sometimes boring is better. If he learns that, he’ll be even better.

Chris Bell: C

And that’s ok. Bell had shot about 60% from three across his previous six games. The ball didn;t go in tonight for him, shooting just 1-8 from beyond the arc and 3/10 from the field. You’re not going to be automatic every night.

Even though it wasn’t a great shooting night, he still managed to contribute seven points and had a pair of blocks as well. He found a way to contribute without his best attribute, and Syracuse didn’t need him to shoot the lights out to win, which is a good sign for the team. 

Adrian Autry: B+

Credit the Syracuse coaching staff, the Orange had a great game plan to start. The key against Virginia Tech was taking away their guards, and Syracuse did just that in the first half, holding Sean Pedulla and Hunter Cattoor, one of the best backcourt duos in the ACC, to a combined 12 points.

The story was similar to NC State and Notre Dame. A big halftime lead dwindles in the second, which is why the grade drops a bit. Syracuse has to find a way to stay engaged the entire time, and that starts with the coaching staff. There were way too many lapses, especially defensively.

However, credit Autry for pulling his team back together towards the end of the game. The Orange finished strong and pulled out a game they had to win.

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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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