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Walk ons scoring? Daaaaaaaaaaam!
And just like that, the worries of the Le Moyne debacle have melted away from the Syracuse collective. At least they should have. Syracuse starts the season with the second blow out in a row, this time by 40 points as the Orange beat Robert Morris (never trust a school named after a guy) 100 to 60.

Andy Rautins was your leading scorer with 22 points, shooting 7-10 from long range. He showed no effects from his ankle injury on Monday. He was active in the zone defense, and had four steals in the game. At one point a Robert Morris player threw him down and on the next ensuing possession after the foul drained a three. He was simply on, and if you read my Twitter account you know I’m looking into season tickets for my mother.

DaShonte Riley led the team with six rebounds in 17 minutes of playing time. However the team as a whole rebounded fairly evenly. Although, overall they only pulled down 36 total, only four more than Robert Morris.

There was balanced scoring in this game as all five starters had scoring in double digits. Wesley Johnson had 15, Arinze Onuaku had 14, Brandon Triche had 12, and Rick Jackson added ten. This is exactly the kind of effort you need from your starting lineup.

Scoop Jardine continues to impress me off the bench in distributing the ball well. He had nine assists along with his six points. More than the young Triche, he does not force as many passes and can dribble the ball very well. He is the perfect spark off the bench that Pace used to provide and we have lacked since.

Syracuse shot the ball extremely well in this game as they shot 58.3% from the floor, and a far better 50% from long range. Conversely, Syracuse limited Robert Morris to 35.5% from the floor, and only 60 points. This was due to the very active and excellent 2-3 Zone defense the team displayed.

Syracuse had 14 blocks, while RoMo had zero. Syracuse also had 17 steals, however they gave the ball up 23 times. Clearly this is a big deal, but to be fair we were in garbage time mode with about 12 minutes to go in the second half. Additionally Robert Morris had 28 turnovers, plus we won by 40, so it was not a big thing. It might be in the future, but with second tier players in the game, it is hard to complain about the turnovers considering the margin we were up.

The team has now played two great games in a row in which they poured on the offense and had solid defense. It is safe to say that the team is on their way to being a very good team. They will get their first gut check (since Le Moyne) playing a very good California team in New York. In the meantime, Syracuse will work to get even better. At least we now expect a good game from this young team.


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