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That about sums up the game nicely.
Folks, I hope that you got to see this game, because it does not get much better than Saturday afternoon if you are a Syracuse basketball fan. If you are a Georgetown fan, your weekend did not go as you had planned. Also, for the four bus loads of people that arrived from DC to enjoy the game at the Carrier Dome, you really had a bad day. This is clearly the biggest win of the season, the sixth win in a row versus Georgetown in the Carrier Dome, and the second year in a row that Georgetown has been ranked, Syracuse was not, and Georgetown has lost in the Dome to a very loud, excited crowd.

Paul Harris, who all of a sudden is now “Do It All Paul”, was the leading scorer for Syracuse. Despite three HUGE mental errors in the last three minutes of the game, he still had an excellent game. He lead the team with 22 points, he had eight rebounds, and made 11 of 14 free throws, four of which, were key in the last minute of the game. Paul Harris has averaged 22 points in his last four games and has really come into his own lately. As long as he continues to produce and continue to work on his ball handling and limiting mistakes, he will be an invaluable resource to Syracuse this season and next season.

Donte Greene was second in scoring, and the simple fact of the matter is that when you shoot 16 shots from three point range some of them will go in. Four of them did, and when they fell, they fell at key moments where the crowd could not be silenced by anything Georgetown did. Greene has been a poor shooter the last five games, but I’ll take the “go big or go home” shooting attitude of Greene when he continues to take good shots, despite the fact they do not go in. He finished with 18 points in 39 minutes.

Flynn continues to play all 40 minutes, making good decisions along the way. He earned 17 points, nine assists, and made all eight of his free throws. Flynn has grown up a lot since the kid that made seven turnovers early in the season. He has stepped up admirably for Devendorf and continues to make outstanding decisions and passes, as well as demonstrate the ability to slice through the lane and take the ball to the hoop. If I could have a beer with one member of the team, besides Kristof!, it would clearly be Flynn.

Onuaku finally put in a game that is worthy of his talent level. The game plan early, as you may have heard on ESPN like 432,562 times during the game, was to have Onuaku go right at Hibbert and it clearly worked. Arinze came out early and sent Hibbert to the bench early in the first half with two fouls. Had Onuaku not fouled out with 3:50 remaining on the clock I am convinced that the final score would not have been as close as it was. He finished with 13 points, five rebounds, and he was good in this game. Apparently my friend John needs to say he sucks more on this blog if he turns around and performs as well as he did on Saturday.

Kristof! had an excellent game. This was not on the offensive end, although he did have three points. Rather, he got the job done on the defensive end, helping cover the fast and accurate guards of Georgetown, and seeming to always be in the position to get a rebound. He earned eight rebounds, three assists, and played 28 minutes. Kristof! continues to be one of my favorite “tall, white, and goofy looking” players of the 2007-2008 season.

Rick Jackson, while about 20 pounds of muscle away from being an outstanding center in college basketball, had the defensive game of his life. With Onuaku in foul trouble, Jackson came in and was a force in the middle of the zone. The stat sheet does not reflect his contributions with three blocked shots, two points, and four rebounds in his 15 minutes of play. He looked fresh, alert, and stoked to be on the floor and he played well.

Scoop looked decent as well, taking the ball to the tin at one point with a reverse lay-up that seemed like a circus shot, but it went in. Good for scoop. Hopefully he can get a few more minutes under his belt before the end of the year.

Syracuse blew up in the first half, at one point leading by 21 points. Syracuse shot 42% from the floor in the first half compared to Georgetown’s 30%. The real stark facts though are that Syracuse had 16 points in the paint, 12 fast break points, and 18 points off turnovers. Georgetown had two, zero, and zero points respectively. Syracuse only had five turnovers in the first half compared to Georgetown’s 12. It is tough to say if this was because of nerves of the players, the crowd noise getting to them, or they simply did not show up to play, but Syracuse took advantage accordingly.

Syracuse overall shot 44.4% from the floor (insert “44” here). They made 24 of 54 attempts. The big number stat for this game, especially down the stretch, was the free throw percentage. Syracuse made 23 of 28 free throw attempts, for an 82% outing. Outstanding day for Syracuse from the free throw line, as they really kept this game out of reach for Georgetown. The notable participant was Harris trying to make up for his three boneheaded plays towards the end of the second half.

Syracuse overall only had 11 turnovers compared to Georgetown’s 14. Harris had four, but a couple of these were not really his fault due to him being double teamed at the top of the key. This is good as Syracuse blew up in the turnover category as of late. Syracuse again had seven blocked shots, led by Jackson. Syracuse also had seven steals with Ongenaet, Onuaku, and Flynn earning two.

Rebounding was also huge for the Orange this game. Kristof!, as I stated earlier, always seemed to be in the right place under the basket and worked hard and fought for a lot of contested rebounds, being rewarded with the ball. Syracuse had 32 defensive rebounds compared to Georgetown’s 23.

The defense was really the key in this game. Even when Syracuse was not scoring points in the first five minutes of the game they were still causing turnovers and contesting every Georgetown shot. The Syracuse 2-3 Zone looked immaculate as Georgetown struggled to find ways to beat it, failing most of the time. Especially with Hibbert on the bench Georgetown could not pass the ball well in the zone and had trouble penetrating. The zone shifted and moved very well and the defense has not been better all year. If you were teaching a clinic on zone defense a video of this game would have to be included.

Syracuse beat their rival, who happened to be ranked eighth in the nation. This led to a court rush, which I called with about 12 minutes remaining in the game. I said that if we won, no matter the score, Syracuse students would storm the floor and they did. Now I am usually only for advocating the court rush in big time situations. Matt Glaude, my former compatriot and founder of this blog, wrote his proposed legislation governing acceptable and unacceptable court rush moments, and based on that article the court rush was justified. It was a major upset over a rival team. However, when you rush the court you have to be safe, and according to Axeman it was not. That is unacceptable. The only acceptable shenanigan in my opinion is stealing the possession arrow. That is simply because it would be awesome to have that in your living room. Other than that, all you can do is take some pictures, maybe slap five to a player, and jump up and down with your buddies. So be careful out there kids. Enjoy the video below of the court rush as I saw it from section 309. Also, we got a little love from Storming The Floor, who have a similar discussion .

All in all, the Georgetown experience was solid. I have to say it was as good as any game I have seen in the Dome. There was some debauchery, some laughs, and an outstanding game to watch, if you wear orange that is. I would like to thank Hope, Abby, and John, my roommates for the weekend. Thanks to Vito for finally getting me my media guide, Bailey Heaps from The Hoya for interviewing me about the rivalry, and finally Orange::44 reader Meredith for sending me the picture below of her and her friends inspired after reading the blog to make the awesome sign. She is the one on the left. Within a day I will have a complete weekend wrap up, as well as the Louisville game reactions. Unfortunately we could not pull off the big win on Big Monday, but we shall see what the ‘Cuse can do in Indiana. Until next time, your mother is a Hoya… and Georgetown still sucks!

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