SYRACUSE, N.Y. — When the #6 Florida State Seminoles scored first, it was assumed by many that it was over for the Orange, who has trailed for more than 80% of games against a ranked opponent this season.
That wasn’t the case at the Carrier Dome on Saturday afternoon as Syracuse defeated Florida State 82-72. The upset drew the second largest crowd of the season and fans and students took to the court after the game.
After scoring first, the seminoles struggled. With two points and four turnovers in the first five minutes.
The Orange held on to their lead, heading into halftime with an 18 point lead over the Seminoles. Head Coach Jim Boeheim called this the “best first half we’ve had in a long time.”
The Orange were unstoppable though, Andrew White scored 24 with 9 rebounds and John Gillon had 21 points. Syracuse’s center, Tyler Lydon also contributed to this afternoon’s win with 14 points and a career high of 6 blocks.
After the game Coach Boeheim praised White, “I thought he made a couple good steals, he had four steals, nine rebounds, eight defensive rebounds. That’s outstanding, outstanding.”
White was all smiles after the game, “I think this will give us the most momentum possible,” he said.
Coach Boeheim said that Lydon is effective at center, and when asked if he enjoys this position, Lydon said, “I just like playing basketball.”
In the second half the Seminoles were a completely different team and although they never took the lead, they got within two points of doing so multiple times.
One of the Seminoles lead scorers, Jonathan Isaac, scored only three points in the first half, but came out with another 16 to end the game. The 6’10’’ freshman also had 12 rebounds.
Although Isaac was responsible for 12 of his teams 39 rebounds, Syracuse still out-rebounded the second tallest team in the nation with 42.
Gillon said that he gets some help from his teammates to make big plays.
“The way Rob [Tyler Roberson] defers, helps me. Sometimes instead of just shooting it, he’ll get me a shot.” He said.
After a big win for the Orange, they will hit the road to take on NC Sate Wednesday at 7 p.m. and the Seminoles will look to get a win in Miami on Wednesday at 8 p.m.