Eagles pound Orange on boards

Hakim Warrick and Gerry McNamara are often touted as the top 1-2 punch in college basketball.

But against Boston College, McNamara went cold from 3-point land and Warrick took just three shots in the second half as the Eagles (22-1, 11-1) downed Syracuse (22-5, 9-4 Big East), 65-60 at Conte Forum Saturday night.

"We go as (McNamara and Warrick) go," Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim said. "Those two guys have got to be there for us every night."

Unfortunately for Syracuse, neither was.

McNamara, who has developed a reputation as a clutch shooter, had the ball with 19 seconds left and an open look from 24-feet away from the basket. With Syracuse trailing, 63-60, McNamara fired away.

But his shot was an airball and BC's Jermaine Watson recovered. It was the second-straight airball the Syracuse junior had shot, and Watson would hit two free throws to put Syracuse away.

Although McNamara led Syracuse with 18 points, he was 2-for-11 from downtown, 5-for-17 from the field overall.

Warrick didn't fair much better.

After scoring 10 points in the first half on 4-of-8 shooting, he disappeared in the second. The Orange tried to go to him early, but Warrick's first shot didn't come close to the basket, and his second resulted in a turnover. He finished with just 12 points and four rebounds in 40 minutes.

"I just wasn't aggressive," Warrick said.

While Warrick misfired early in the second half, Boston College quickly turned a 29-27 deficit into a 39-31 lead, thanks to two baskets from forward Craig Smith.

Syracuse had trouble containing Smith all night, as the junior finished with 16 points and 15 rebounds. Eight of those rebounds came on the offensive end, as the Eagles dominated the Orange in that category, 45-31.

Josh Pace added 14 for the Orange. BC's Jared Dudley led the way with 21, two of them coming on an offensive tip-in that gave the Eagles a six point lead with 2:40, a play which epitomized Syracuse's rebounding futility.

"Sometimes the ball bounces long – that can happen," Boeheim said. "It doesn't do that 14 times. The bottom line is for us to be as good as we'd like to be, we're going to have to correct our rebounding down the stretch."

The win increased Boston College's lead over Pittsburgh and Syracuse to 2 ½ games in the Big East.

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