Seven Game Winning Streak For Orange

The Syracuse Orangemen upped their record to 7-1 with a 81-63 win over UNC-Asheville at the Carrier Dome on Sunday.<br><br>

Syracuse, now on a seven-game winning streak, hosts Canisius on Tuesday at the Carrier Dome.

Junior Hakim Warrick led the way for the Orange with 18 points, while sophomore Gerry McNamara added 17 points, including five treys. McNamara claimed sole possession of ninth place on SU's all-time three-point field goals made ledger and has 110 in his career.

Sophomore Billy Edelin recorded his second double-double of the year as he had 11 points and a personal-best 11 assists. Edelin also made his first three-point bucket of his career in the game. Edelin had his first career double-double in the Orangemen's loss to Charlotte. Edelin scored 13 points and had 10 assists.

"I thought Billy was real good tonight," head coach Jim Boeheim said. "Whenever we got stuck on offense he got in the lane and made a good play, he got people open. He makes good decisions and usually gets the ball up soft on the basket. "

Syracuse never trailed in the contest as the Orangemen opened up an early 10-2 lead. A free-throw by NC-Asheville's Oliver Holmes made the score 21-16 with a 8:07 to play in the first half, but SU went on a 13-0 run extend its margin to 18 at 3:12. SU led 38-21 lead at the half.

An Edelin layup gave the Orangemen a 21-point advantage, 57-36. NC-Asheville went on a 15-5 run to cut the Orange lead to 62-51 with 6:29 left in the game. Holmes scored six of his seven points during the run. McNamara responded with his fourth trey of the day and a layup and dunk by Warrick gave SU a 69-53 lead at 4:48. Junior Josh Pace who led the team with seven rebounds and had 10 points, scored four points down the stretch to help preserve the win.

The Syracuse defense limited Asheville to a season-low 31 percent shooting (23-74).

The Orangemen recorded 14 blocks in the contest, the most in a game since they rejected 16 shots against Colgate on Nov. 28, 2001.

Joseph Barber led NC-Asheville with 17 points and 10 rebounds, while Bryan McCullough and Chad Mohn scored nine points apiece.

Freshman Darryl Watkins connected on all four of his field goals and finished with a career-best eight points and four blocks off the bench.

"He is an active player," Boeheim said of Watkins. "He is going to bring a lot of energy. He still has a lot to learn. He got a couple of quick fouls when he was in there in the first half. He is quick and has great athletic ability. He just has to learn a little more about what we are doing. Part of his problem is that Craig has played well and Jeremy has proven that he can play well for us in big game situations and those guys are still there."

Boeheim feels that the early season games have been a good test for both the veterans and rookies on this year's team.

"I think overall we got through these first eight games and everybody has had an opportunity to play a little bit. Our veteran guys know what has to be done and are playing at a pretty good level right now. Our young guys can help us in different spots as we go on."

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