Griffin Sparks Fast-Finishing SU Victory Vs NC State
RALEIGH, N.C. - A 22-point performance from Alan Griffin powered Syracuse (11-6, 5-5 ACC) past NC State (8-8, 4-7 ACC), 77-68, on Tuesday evening in Raleigh.
HOW THE GAME WAS DECIDED
With the Orange clinging to a 67-64 advantage, Syracuse scored eight unanswered points to push its lead to 75-64 with 1:49 left in regulation. Buddy Boehim hit a jumper in the lane, Griffin scored on a put-back from his own miss and Quiny Guerrier tallied in the paint to start the run. Kadary Richmond finished it off with two free throws.
In addition to Griffin's output, Boeheim (16 points) and Guerrier (14 points) both finished with double-digit point totals. Guerrier also led Syracuse on the glass with seven rebounds. The Orange defense played a pivotal role in the road victory by forcing 20 turnovers over the course of the contest. Richmond, who entered the game averaging 2.0 steals per contest, had three thefts to go along with eight points.
FROM COACH BOEHEIM
"This is the best that we have moved the ball and worked together all year" said Syracuse head coach Jim Boeheim. "Alan (Griffin) played his best game of the season and we got shots for him and Buddy (Boeheim). Quincy (Guerrier) dominated inside in the second half and he was tremendous. It was a great team effort."
FIGHTING FOR THE LEAD
A back-and forth affair ensued during the game's first 10 minutes, with 18 points apiece being scored by the two ACC rivals. Just past the midway point of the half, NC State edged ahead first with five unanswered points, but Griffin answered back with a 3-pointer and Joseph Girard III made a lay-up to tie the contest at 23 with seven minutes to go in the opening stanza.
The Wolfpack reclaimed a 28-25 lead with 3:30 to play in the half, which proved short-lived upon Kadary Richmond rocketing the Orange ahead by scoring six unanswered points on a pair of free throws and back-to-back steals that he converted to lay-ups. Griffin added on a triple to cap a 9-0 run for the 'Cuse that put them ahead, 34-28, with 1:44 remaining in the opening period.
The 'Pack stayed on the attack in the final minute with five-straight points to cut the Orange advantage to one and make the Syracuse lead 34-33 at the half.
ORANGE OPEN A LEAD
NC State opened the second stanza with a make from the charity stripe, but Syracuse struck back with six unanswered points that featured a triple from Boeheim to help the Orange pull ahead, 40-34, with four minutes gone in the half.
An 11-5 scoring run from the Wolfpack brought the teams even at 45 with 14:18 to play. However, Boeheim drained a triple and knocked down a two-point jumper to put the Orange in front by five. An NC State free throw make was answered by a layup from Guerrier and a 3-pointer from Griffin to extend the Orange advantage to 55-46 with 12:23 remaining in the contest.
DANCING WITH WOLVES
NC State cut the Syracuse lead to four by outscoring the Orange 9-4 over a two-minute stretch. Three-pointers from Robert Braswell and Griffin put the Orange up by double-digits, 65-55, with 8:22 left on the clock.
The Orange outrebounded the Wolfpack, 32-28.
Syracuse surpassed NC State in second chance points, 15-8.
A midrange make in the second half from Buddy Boeheim gave him his 900th career point.
A second-half triple from Alan Griffin gave the Illinois transfer 600 career points. His fourth 3-pointer of the game also gave him 100 career makes from beyond the arc.
The Orange outscored the Wolfpack in points off turnovers (21-16), points in the paint (28-20), and fastbreak points (12-9).
The Orange return home on Saturday, February 13 to take on Boston College. Tip off from the Carrier Dome is set for 2 p.m. and the game will be televised on ACC Network. The teams previously met in Chestnut Hill, Mass. on December 12, when Syracuse defeated the Eagles, 101-63.