SU vs. Colgate

Richardson and Gbinije score 17 as Orange cruise past Colgate, 78-51

Interim head coach Mike Hopkins won his first game at the helm.

The Syracuse Orange (7-2) have now won 50 straight games against the Colgate Raiders (2-6). The Raiders haven’t beaten Syracuse since Feb. 24, 1962, by a score of 67-63 in the Manley Field House. John F. Kennedy was the President of the United States and interim head coach Mike Hopkins hadn’t been born yet. Hopkins, who was in his second of nine games at the helm for a sanctioned Jim Boeheim, can now officially score a victory in his head coaching record book. 

Photo: Jacob Greenfeld
Syracuse guard Michael Gbinije attacks the rim.


“I just want to get these guys better," Hopkins said after being asked how he felt about the win. “It’s never been about me. I’m happy the guys won after losing two in a row. I’m happy that I get an opportunity to represent this great university and those kids. We won the game tonight, I’m happy about that, but we need to get a lot better.”


Syracuse fell to an early 7-3 deficit early into the first half, but then went on a 24-4 run that saw Colgate scramble for answers as they quickly fell into a 27-11 hole. Freshman guard Malachi Richardson and freshman forward Tyler Lydon both put up nine points in the first half while combining for four rebounds and shooting five for 10 from behind the arc. The Orange shot a total of 18 three-pointers in the first half, draining eight of them. The second half saw Syracuse have better shot selection from long range, knocking down six out of 12.


Graduate guard Michael Gbinije took control of the offense in the second half. Following a modest six points in the first twenty minutes, he added 11 to tie for the team lead.


“[Gbinije] has got to be a Player of the Year candidate, not only in the ACC, but in the entire country," Hopkins raved in the post-game interview. “When you have a Michael Gbinije on your team, playing at the level he’s playing, and the shots that he’s making, that kid does not stop. To have a kid like that, it makes you a lot more confident as a coach no question.”


What may have been weak spots for the Orange this season didn’t seem to show tonight, as the team collectively went 14-18 from the free throw line in the contest, and they tied the Raiders in rebounding with 32. Junior forward Tyler Roberson led the way with seven boards, including four on the offensive end.


The Orange get some much needed rest following the victory while the players study for their finals. Their next game is on Sunday, Dec. 13, when they take on St. John’s Red Storm (5-3) at noon in Madison Square Garden. 


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