Louisville adds to SU's woes, hands Orange another loss

No. 15 Louisville defeated No. 13 Syracuse for the seventh consecutive time Saturday. The Orange have now lost six of their last eight games.

A 20-point deficit proved to be a bit too much for the Orange to overcome Saturday, as they lost to the Louisville Cardinals, 73-69.

The Orange defense was no match for the unstoppable 3-pointers from Preston Knowles and Kyle Kuric. Kuric led Louisville with 23 points, while Knowles was right behind him with 22.

Photo: Zach Ornitz
Sophomore guard Brandon Triche drives to the basket during a game against Iona earlier in the season. Triche scored 21 points against Louisville Saturday, but the Orange lost, 73-69.

Syracuse has now lost six of its last eight games to fall to 20-6 on the season, and 7-6 in Big East play. This was also their seventh consecutive loss to the Cardinals (20-6, 8-4).

Behind the strong play of freshman forward C.J. Fair, Syracuse opened up a seven point lead early in the opening period. However, Louisville went on a 21-4 run that turned the Orange lead into a 10 point deficit.

Towards the end of the first half, the Cardinals used a barrage of 3-pointers to create that 17 point swing on only a five minute span. The run was capped off at the buzzer with a deep 3-pointer from Knowles, and the Orange went into the break trailing by 10, 40-30.

Constantly facing double and triple teams, Rick Jackson struggled for the second consecutive game as he was held scoreless in the first half, and finished the game with seven points and seven rebounds. Scoop Jardine and Brandon Triche were there to help, battling with a few 3-pointers of their own, but it was not enough to carry the ‘Cuse. Triche finished the game with a season high 21-points, while Jardine chipped in 20.

In the second half, the Cardinals continued to streak behind the hot shooting of Knowles and Kuric, as they opened up a 20 point lead on Syracuse only four and half minutes into the final period.

Syracuse would respond with run of their own, cutting the Cardinals lead to three, 66-69, on a layup by Triche with 1:39 remaining. Free throws proved critical towards the end of the game, as Cardinal Peyton Siva sealed the deal on the line.

SU struggled to defend the perimeter the entire game as the connected on 13-of-27 shots from beyond the arc. Louisville’s effectiveness from 3-point range proved to be the difference in the game, despite the fact that Syracuse shot 51 percent from the floor.

Freshman center Baye Moussa Keita made his first career start Saturday, replacing fellow freshman Fab Melo in the starting lineup. SU head coach Jim Boeheim said Melo missed practice during the week, but elected not to elaborate further.

Syracuse won’t have long to dwell on its second losing streak of the season with West Virginia coming to the Carrier Dome on Monday.


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