Syracuse came up just short in match play against Georgia Tech–wait, this wasn’t golf? You mean Syracuse actually won that crapfest? Hey, alright! It wasn’t pretty, but the Orange went on the road and came away with a brutal 46-45 “win” over the Ramblin’ Wreck, and “wreck” has perhaps never described a basketball game better than tonight.
There’s really not much that can be said about this game, is there? We all knew going in that it had a chance to be brutal to watch based on each team’s offensive woes. Georgia Tech, as we were reminded time and again, came in as the worst three point shooting team in the nation. Syracuse hasn’t been much better, and neither team did much to dissuade people from suspecting that they aren’t very good at making baskets.
Here are some highlights from tonight’s game:
Thank goodness for Rakeem Christmas and Michael Gbinije, because without those two it would have been a genuine struggle for Syracuse to break 20 tonight. Trevor Cooney knocked down a couple three pointers, but was otherwise pretty nonexistent. Kaleb Joseph spent a lot of time on the bench and put up a donut in the scoring column. Tyler Roberson flashed a couple nice moves but struggled with some turnovers and fouls, and Chris McCullough continued to show that he’s just not physically strong enough to compete right now.
So what can we take away from this game? Hopefully every existing copy of the film to be burned in hellfire. Syracuse is 11-4, and 2-0 in the ACC, and that’s really the only thing that matters after that mess of a game. The Orange scored just 18 points in the second half, which was somehow, miraculously enough, because Georgia Tech was equally abysmal.
Christmas finished with 18 points, eight boards, three assists, two steals, two blocks, and he made the two game-winning free throws with 12.4 seconds remaining, and Gbinije chipped in 14 points. Of course even Gbinije’s point total is deceptive, since eight of those points came in the first few minutes of action, as Silent G scored eight of the team’s first 10.
If you’re looking for a reason as to why Syracuse was able to escape with the win, it’s because the Orange were slightly less incompetent on offense than Georgia Tech. That’s literally the difference. It was kind of amazing to watch Georgia Tech continually milk the shot clock only to throw up an airball as the seconds started ticking away. There were plenty of offensive rebounds on both sides (19 for Georgia Tech, 11 for Syracuse) but second chance points were decidedly not a factor.
That’s basically all there needs to be said about this game. It’s important for the Orange to earn as many wins as they can right now if they want any shot at an NCAA Tournament berth, and at the end of the day that’s why we have to remind ourselves that a win, is a win, is a win.
Not all wins are created equal, of course, and this one feels like the runt of the litter.
On to the next game, Syracuse. Try making some baskets this time, yes?