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No. 1 Syracuse men's lacrosse holds on for 9-8 victory over Binghamton

Molloy makes crucial save in last seconds to preserve SU's victory at the Carrier Dome.

Binghamton men’s lacrosse attackman Griffin Konen received a pass in front of the Syracuse net with time running down and a chance to tie the score.

The Bearcats were trailing by one with 11 seconds left in the game when Ryan Winkoff found Konen cutting to the goal. Konen caught the ball and fired a shot at the Orange net, looking to force overtime.

But, SU goalie Evan Molloy deflected the ball away to preserve a 9-8 Orange victory at the Carrier Dome.

“I just tried to pivot and get as big as I could,” Molloy said about his game-saving stop. “Just kicked my leg out and got a piece of it.”

Molloy made several crucial saves in the second half. With the Orange trailing 7-6 midway through the third quarter, he made back-to-back stops to keep SU’s deficit at one. After Syracuse (11-1, 4-0 ACC) regained a 9-7 lead with 6:21 remaining, Molloy stopped a shot from T.J. Tiernan. He recorded nine total saves in the contest.

“I thought Evan was terrific in the cage today,” SU head coach John Desko said. “Not only making the save, but coming up with a couple of possessions and helping us get the ball to the other end of the field.”

Binghamton controlled the tempo early, keeping possession for long stretches of time. But, it was the Orange who jumped out to a first quarter lead and Brendan Bomberry found the back of the net to extend SU’s advantage to 4-1 with five seconds remaining in the period.

Two minutes later, Bearcat midfielder Joe Licata scored to cut the deficit to two. From there, BU scored three more unanswered goals to take the lead. Syracuse’s Jordan Evans and Nick Mariano each netted a goal over the next four minutes, flipping the scoreboard back in the Orange’s favor heading into halftime.

“They had really long possessions and made us play a lot of defense,” Desko said. "They were able to crawl back in it.”

Binghamton (9-4, 3-2 America East) evened the score two minutes into the third period and regained the lead five minutes later, before Evans netted his third goal of the game, retying the score at 7.

Syracuse appeared to be pulling away when Ryan Simmons and Jamie Trimboli netted goals 64 seconds apart five minutes into the final period. But, Bearcat attackman Tom Moore scored with 2:38 remaining in the game to cut Binghamton’s lead to 9-8. Moore tallied a game-high five goals in the contest.

After Syracuse’s Nate Solomon had his shot blocked with 1:04 left in regulation, Binghamton had possession and a chance to extend the game. But, Molloy made the crucial save, securing Syracuse’s victory.

“[The defense] really gutted it out, especially at the end of the game, to get those stops” Desko said. “Hats off to our defense. I thought they did a great job today.”

No. 1 Syracuse will return to action on Friday in the ACC Tournament against North Carolina. The Orange topped UNC in overtime, 12-11, on April 15 in Chapel Hill. 


Syracuse guards Sykes, Peterson selected in WNBA Draft

Backcourt duo led SU to a 22-8 record and an NCAA Tournament appearance in 2016-17.

Syracuse guards Brittney Sykes and Alexis Peterson were both selected in the WNBA draft on Thursday night. The pair started all 33 games in the Orange backcourt last season and combined to average 42.6 points per contest. 

“Over the last few years, we have proven that we have high-level players, All-Americans and professional players,” Syracuse head coach Quentin Hillsman said in a press release. “Their selections tonight are a testament to what we have built at Syracuse. I cannot overstate how happy I am for both players.”

Sykes became the highest-drafted player in SU history when she was selected seventh overall by the Atlanta Dream. She was drafted one pick higher than former Orange center Kayla Alexander, who was selected eighth overall by the San Antonio Stars in 2013.

Sykes averaged 19.2 points and 7.8 rebounds per game in 2016-17 while shooting 39.3 percent from behind the 3-point line. Her 1,846 career points ranks third in program history. Sykes averaged 13.4 points per contest and started 137 games over her five-year collegiate career.

“It feels good to know that I left my mark here [at Syracuse],” Sykes said in a press release. “Now, I am ready to live my dream of playing professional basketball.”

The Seattle Storm drafted Peterson with the third pick of the second round—15th overall. As a senior at SU, Peterson was named an Associated Press Second-Team All-American and averaged a team-high 23.4 points per game. She also added seven assists per contest and shot 42.3 percent from the field.

“It is such a blessing to be selected by the Seattle Storm,” Peterson said in a press release. “It is crazy to say. I have been wanting this since I picked up a basketball. This really means a lot.”

Peterson and Sykes led Syracuse to 30 wins and an unexpected NCAA Championship Game appearance in 2015-16. The Orange followed that with a 22-8 record in 2016-17 and a trip to the NCAA Tournament. SU’s season ended with a 94-64 loss to UConn in the second round. 

Syracuse men's basketball hires Allen Griffin as assistant coach

The former SU guard spent the last six seasons on Archie Miller's staff at Dayton.

The Syracuse men’s basketball team hired Allen Griffin as an assistant coach, Syracuse University athletics announced on Thursday. A spot opened on SU’s staff after former assistant head coach Mike Hopkins left to become the head coach at the University of Washington late last month.

Griffin played for the Orange under head coach Jim Boeheim from 1997-01, appearing in 133 games and starting 68. After a brief professional career in Europe, Griffin returned to Syracuse in 2003, serving as the director of basketball operations, before leaving in 2005 to coach elsewhere. He spent the last six seasons as an assistant under Archie Miller at Dayton, before Miller left to take the head coaching job at Indiana.

"I can't express how excited I am to be back at Syracuse," Griffin said in a press release. "It was a real honor to play for a Hall of Fame coach in Coach Boeheim and I feel the same way about being a member of his staff."

Griffin primarily played point guard during his four years at Syracuse. As a senior, he averaged 10.8 points and 6.5 assists per contest. Griffin has experience coaching all three position groups, but will primarily work with centers, according to a press release.

"We are fortunate to be able to add someone of Allen's caliber to our program," Boeheim said in a press release. "In addition to the great familiarity he has with Syracuse basketball, he owns valuable experience gained coaching with other programs."

Griffin served as an assistant coach at St. Francis, Providence and Hofstra before being hired by Miller. While at Dayton, the Flyers advanced to four NCAA Tournaments and registered a 139-63 record. 

"I love Syracuse," Griffin said in a press release. “I've enjoyed the places and people I've worked with in the past but I've always hoped I'd get the opportunity to come back. It's like home to me."

Syracuse men's basketball's Mike Hopkins to become next head coach at Washington

Boeheim and Syracuse agree to contract extension following Hopkins' departure.

Syracuse men’s basketball head coach designate Mike Hopkins will become the next head coach at the University of Washington. Reports indicate Hopkins contract with the Huskies is for six years.

Following Hopkins’ departure, Syracuse University and head men’s basketball coach Jim Boeheim agreed to a contract extension for an unannounced number of years. Boeheim was expected to retire following the 2017-18 season.

“Mike received a great opportunity and we thank him and wish him the best,” Boeheim said in a statement. “I’m happy to stay on to help the program and to continue the staff’s devotion to success.”

Hopkins played for the Orange from 1989-93 and began his career as an assistant for Boeheim in 1996.

Hopkins served as Syracuse’s interim head coach for nine games in 2015-16 during Boeheim’s suspension for NCAA violations. He registered a 4-5 record. Hopkins was expected to become SU’s permanent head coach following Boeheim’s retirement.

Hopkins takes over a Washington team that tallied just a 9-22 record last season. The Huskies missed the last six NCAA Tournaments under former head coach Lorenzo Romar, who was fired on Wednesday.

"I'm extremely excited to welcome Mike and his family to Seattle," Washington Director of Athletics Jennifer Cohen said in a statement to gohuskies.com. "His resume and reputation within the basketball community made him stand out to us, but ultimately it was his vision for Washington, his passion for teaching and developing student-athletes and his close alignment with the core values of our institution and department that made it more than clear that he was the right fit for us."

Syracuse also announced that Adrian Autry has been promoted to associate head coach. Current Orange assistant coach Gerry McNamara is also expected to remain on Boeheim’s staff. Both have been on the SU bench since 2011-12.

"The Syracuse basketball program was built on the concept of family and that remains intact with Coach Boeheim agreeing to this contract extension," said Syracuse Director of Athletics John Wildhack in a statement. “Having experienced assistant coaches like Adrian Autry and Gerry McNamara on the staff helps us maintain the elite standing the program has earned.”

Three takeaways from Syracuse men's basketball's loss at Georgia Tech

Orange's losing skid hits three after 71-65 loss to Yellow Jackets.

The Syracuse Orange men’s basketball team fell at Georgia Tech on Sunday, 71-65. Taurean Thompson recorded 14 first-half points and Syracuse led by as many as nine in the game’s opening 20 minutes.

But, Georgia Tech (16-11, 7-7 ACC) began the second half on a 10-3 run and SU (16-12, 8-7 ACC) never regained the advantage. The two teams will face each other again in their regular season finale on March 4 in the Carrier Dome.

Here are three takeaways from the Syracuse loss:

Syracuse’s comeback came up just short for the second straight game

A huge dunk by Georgia Tech’s Tadric Jackson put the Yellow Jackets ahead by 13, 60-47, with just 3:21 remaining in the game. But, over the next two minutes, Syracuse launched a 17-7 run to cut its deficit to just three and with 56 seconds left, Tyler Lydon split a pair of free throws to make the score 67-65.

After a missed lay-up by Georgia Tech, Syracuse had the ball and a chance to tie. But, early in the shot clock, Tyler Roberson was called for a moving screen, giving the ball back to the Yellow Jackets. Syracuse would not score again.

On Monday night against No. 8 Louisville, Syracuse rallied from a 14-point deficit to force overtime, only to fall, 76-72, in the extra period.

This was a big loss for Syracuse’s NCAA Tournament hopes

Georgia Tech and Syracuse both entered the game on the NCAA Tournament bubble. ESPN bracketologist Joe Lunardi had the Orange as one of the last eight teams in the field while Georgia Tech was one of the first four out. The Yellow Jackets victory could switch those positions.

After winning five in a row from Jan. 24 to Feb. 7, Syracuse has now lost three straight games. The Orange has two top-10 victories on its resume—over Virginia and Florida State—but bad non-conference losses to UConn and St. John’s.

Meanwhile, Georgia Tech has topped Florida State, Notre Dame and North Carolina in 2016-17.

White’s 20-point scoring streak snapped

Andrew White III had scored 20 or more points in seven straight games entering Sunday’s contest at Georgia Tech. He came up three points shy of continuing the streak.

After missing his first three shots of the contest, White tallied 11-points and knocked down three 3-pointers in the last nine minutes of the first half. But, he recorded just six points in the game’s final 20 minutes.

White has play 38 or more minutes in 10 straight games and is averaging a time high 17.9 points per contest. 

Three takeaways from Syracuse men's basketball's loss at Pittsburgh

Despite 20 points from Gillon, White, Panthers snap SU's five-game win streak.

After overcoming multiple second-half deficits during its five-game win streak, the Syracuse Orange men’s basketball team’s comeback came up short at Pittsburgh (14-11, 3-9 ACC) on Saturday afternoon, losing 80-75. SU (16-10, 8-5 ACC) had topped the Panthers, 77-66, in early January, but failed to complete the season sweep at the Petersen Events Center. Here are three takeaways from the Orange’s loss:

Despite comeback, double-digit deficit doomed SU

A jumper by guard Tyus Battle put the Orange ahead 15-10 eight minutes into the game. But, Pittsburgh closed the half’s final two minutes on an 8-2 run to take a 35-28 lead at the break. By the 14:51 mark of the second half, the Panthers had increased their advantage to double-digits, forcing Syracuse to extend its defense.

Despite a frantic comeback by the Orange in the game’s final minutes—a 3-pointer by John Gillon cut the Panthers lead to just three with seven seconds left—SU failed to overcome its large deficit.

White, Gillon stay hot

Andrew White III scored 13 of his 20 points in the second half to keep Syracuse in the game late. Overall, the graduate transfer knocked down 7 of his 16 shots from the field and hit three shots from behind the 3-point line on eight attempts. White has scored 20 or more points in six straight games and has reached double-figures in all but one of SU’s 26 contests. He is averaging a team-high 17.7 points per game on the season.

Gillon played all but one minute against the Panthers Saturday, finishing with 20 points. He has reached that figure in three of Syracuse’s last five games—including a 43-point performance in the Orange’s overtime victory over N.C. State earlier this month. He had scored 20 points in just one of SU’s first 21 games this season. 

Gillon was also 5-for-5 from the free throw line and has now connected on 34 straight attempts, tying former Syracuse guard Brandon Triche for the program record.

Syracuse gets big contributions off the bench

After starting SU’s first 14 games, guard Frank Howard has seen his playing time cut significantly during ACC play. Howard played under 10 minutes in each of the Orange’s last four games and combined for more turnovers, six, than points, five, during those contests. But, against Pittsburgh, Howard made a major impact. He played 25 minutes, finished with 12 points—the first time he reached double-figure scoring totals since Dec. 19 against Eastern Michigan—and hit all five of his free throw attempts.

Tyler Roberson also added eight points and five rebounds in 24 minutes, giving SU a total of 20 points off the bench, its highest mark in ACC play. 

St. John's routs Syracuse men's basketball at the Carrier Dome

Red Storm hits 12 3-pointers, shoots 53.1 percent from the field in 93-60 victory over SU

The Syracuse Orange basketball team looked as if it had finally found a rhythm early in the second half against St. John’s on Wednesday night. 

SU (7-5) had been trailing the Red Storm since the 11-minute mark of the opening period and was struggling on both ends of the floor. But, the Orange cut its deficit to just 10 in the eight minutes following halftime and seemed poised for a run.   

Then, with 12 minutes remaining, Red Storm guard Malik Ellison caught the ball just behind the 3-point line and pump-faked, sending an Orange defender flying past him. He proceeded to take one dribble, square his shoulders and nail a 3-pointer to put St. John’s up, 59-46. The game would never be that close again 

From there, St. John’s pulled away from the Orange and turned the match-up into a rout. The Red Storm’s lead ballooned to 37 with just over two minutes remaining and St. John’s cruised to a 93-60 victory. 

“I have to coach better and we have to play a lot better,” SU head coach Jim Boeheim said. “We have a lot of games left, a lot of difficult games left. The way we are playing right now, we cannot win a lot of those games.” 

For the second straight year, St. John’s picked apart SU’s signature 2-3 zone. The Red Storm moved the ball across the perimeter and also found holes on the inside, resulting in easy looks all game long. 

The Red Storm nailed 12 3-pointers—led by four from freshman Shamorie Ponds and three from Ellison—and shot 53.1 percent from the field in the contest. Ponds finished with a game-high 21 points for the Red Storm, while Ellison added 16. 

St. John’s also made 12 3-pointers in its 84-72 victory over the Orange at Madison Square Garden a season ago.

“We did not execute on defense,” Boeheim said. “We thought we knew what they were going to do. We didn’t do what we wanted to do on defense.”

One game after scoring a season-high 105 points in a victory over Eastern Michigan, the Orange struggled offensively. Syracuse shot just 32.8 percent from the floor and a season low 16.7 percent from 3-point range, hitting just 4 of its 24 shots from behind the arc.  

“We thought we could get stuff inside and we just weren’t good enough in there,” Boeheim said. 

After leaving in the first half against Eastern Michigan with a leg injury, Tyler Lydon returned and led the Orange with 16 points and 10 rebounds, his sixth career double-double. 

But, Syracuse’s leading scorer, Andrew White III—who entered the game averaging 16.2 points per contest—shot just one of six from the field and finished with two points. White reached double-figures in every other SU game so far this season.

“It is up to us to go out and get the win,” White said about the team’s performance. “You have to be determined, you have to play hard, you have to do things to put yourself in the position to win.”

Syracuse has now lost five of its last eight and combined to go 0-5 against teams from the AAC, Big East, Big 10 and SEC in the non-conference portion of its schedule. 

“Up is the only way we can go,” said SU guard Frank Howard who finished with four points on two-of-nine shooting. “I don’t think you get any worse than this. I feel like we have this conversation a lot, about what we have to do. We are going to figure it out. That’s all I can say”

The Orange will conclude its non-conference schedule on Tuesday against Cornell. Tip-off is scheduled for 7 p.m. at the Carrier Dome. 

Three takeaways from Syracuse men's basketball's loss at Wisconsin

Badgers shoot 49.2 percent from the field to top SU, 77-60, in ACC/BIG 10 Challenge

Three days after struggling offensively in a loss to South Carolina at the Barclays Center, the No. 22 Syracuse men’s basketball team was topped by No. 17 Wisconsin, 77-60, in Madison, Wisconsin. Here are three takeaways from the game, which was part of the ACC/BIG 10 Challenge.

DaJuan Coleman can be an effective low-post scorer

After struggling against South Carolina, Coleman found a rhythm on the offensive end of the floor on Tuesday. The center opened the game with a score off a strong post move. Four minutes later, Coleman — who entered the contest averaging just 5.0 points per game — scored four consecutive points for the Orange, knocking down a mid-range jumper and hitting a pair of free throws.

Coleman was efficient in the paint and around the rim, hitting five of his seven shots from the field. He finished with a season-high 12 points and three rebounds in 30 minutes of action. Coleman had not played more than 15 minutes in any game this season.

Guards Andrew White III and John Gillon joined Coleman in double-figures. White scored all of his 14 points in the first half, while Gillon chipped in 10.

Rebounding hurt the Orange

After losing the rebounding battle, 37-30, against South Carolina on Saturday, SU struggled on the boards against Wisconsin. The Badgers dominated the Orange on the glass, outrebounding SU by 15, 40-25, in the game. Wisconsin managed to extend multiple possessions, corralling 14 offensive rebounds, which led to 18 second chance points.

Wisconsin forwards Nigel Hayes and Ethan Happ combined for 24 total rebounds, one less than the entire SU team totaled in the game. No Orange player recorded more than five boards in the contest.

Hayes’ interior passing caused the SU defense to scramble

Wisconsin found holes in Syracuse’s 2-3 zone and got the ball into Hayes’ hands at the free throw line. The senior forward then, on multiple occasions, distributed quick, accurate passes both on the perimeter and inside. This left the Orange scrambling on defense, opening up gaps in its zone, which the Badgers exposed.

Overall, Wisconsin shot 49.2 percent from the field and knocked down 11 of its 23 3-point attempts. Hayes finished with just nine points, but added 11 rebounds and a career-high 10 assists. Happ scored a game-high 24 points, hitting 10 of his 12 shot attempts, while senior guard Bronson Koenig drained six 3-pointers. 


Amba Etta-Tawo has begun SU football career with three impressive performances

Star wide receiver ranks third nationally in receiving yards, added to Biletnikoff Award Watch List

Amba Etta-Tawo burst onto the scene for the Syracuse football team. Now, the redshirt senior is receiving national attention.

Etta-Tawo, a transfer from Maryland, was added to the Biletnikoff Award Watch List on Wednesday. The Biletnikoff Award is given annually to the nation’s top collegiate receiver, regardless of position.

In his first game as a member of the Orange squad, Etta-Tawo was a difference maker. He hauled in 12 catches and totaled 210 yards against Colgate with a touchdown. As a junior at Maryland, Etta-Tawo registered just 216 yards for the entire season.

“From day one, we knew that this type of offense, there’s room for a lot of plays,” Etta-Tawo said following the game.

Despite Syracuse dropping its next two games, Etta-Tawo has not slowed down. He has amassed a total of 16 catches, 226 yards and two touchdowns in the Orange’s losses to Louisville and South Florida. Etta-Tawo currently ranks third nationally in receiving yards per game.

SU Football: Syracuse vs. Colgate

The three finalists for the Biletnikoff Award will be named on Nov. 22, with the winner announced on Dec. 8.

Below is Etta-Tawo’s yards receiving in each of Syracuse’s first three games as compared to his average yards per game during the 2015 season at Maryland. 

Photo: Jensen Stidham

Syracuse legend Jim Brown returns to campus

NFL Hall of Famer Jim Brown received Arents Award and met with current SU football team during Orange Central.

One of the greatest athletes in Syracuse history returned to campus this weekend.

NFL Hall of Famer Jim Brown, who was an All-American at Syracuse in both football and lacrosse, was honored with the George Arents Award on Friday night in the Schine Student Center. The Arents Award is SU’s highest alumni honor and is presented annually to four individuals who have made outstanding contributions to their chosen field. Brown received his Arents Award for excellence in athletics and social activism.

On Saturday morning, prior to SU’s game against South Florida, Brown had an opportunity to meet with the current Orange coaching staff and players. He had high praise for first-year Syracuse head coach Dino Babers.

“I think they chose a really fine person and a fine coach,” Brown said. “He was willing to express himself to me and he was willing to express himself to his players in a manner that I think they can appreciate and benefit from… I’m very hyped about the possibility of Syracuse being a great team sometime in the future because I think those administrators have made a great choice in their coach.”

During his time with the current players, Brown said he discussed the mental and physical aspects of football and how the two work together.

“I talked to them about the fact that football is a team game and you have to appreciate each player that contributes what they’re supposed to, which might be minor compared to what the quarterback, or the wide receiver or running back [contributes],” Brown said. “A successful team maximizes all of their abilities and has an appreciation for those players that aren’t stars, but great contributors to the overall effectiveness of the team.”

Brown addressed the media at a press conference on Saturday afternoon. In the videos below he discusses how he liked to prepare for a game, and his thoughts on current athletes and Dino Babers.