BOSTON (AP) — Chants for Boeheim came roaring down in Boston College’s Conte Forum by a large gathering of visiting fans dressed in orange.
This time it wasn’t for 74-year-old legendary coach Jim, who is running Syracuse for his 43rd season. Nope, it was for his son, Buddy.
Tyus Battle scored 21 of his 31 points in the second half and Syracuse, getting an additional spark from the coach’s son Buddy, who scored 13 points, beat Boston College 77-71 on Wednesday night.
Buddy Boeheim, a freshman who came off the bench when starters Oshae Brissett and Elijah Hughes got in first-half foul trouble, hit three 3-pointers for the Orange (15-6, 6-2 Atlantic Coast Conference).
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A few times in the first half chants of “Buddy Boeheim!” echoed down from the stands. When the game was in hand late, it started up again.
“That was crazy,” he said, smiling. “It felt like a home game.”
The 6-foot-5 guard went 5 for 7 from the floor, knocking down 3 of 5 3-point attempts.
“I thought Buddy got some looks and he was making them,” Jim Boeheim said. “He’s been making them in practice and once we got into the league.”
It really came down to the Battle’s play in the second half that carried the Orange.
“In the second half they couldn’t guard Tyus and he took over the game,” Jim Boeheim said. “They just couldn’t stop Tyus and that was the ballgame.”
Ky Bowman and Jordan Chatman each had 21 points for Boston College (11-8, 2-5).
“I think when you’ve got a great player like that and you give him some teed up shots early in the game, it gets him going,” BC coach Jim Christian said of Battle. “Credit to him – any tough shot after that becomes easier.”
BC closed to 53-51 and had a chance to take the lead twice before Battle nailed a 3-pointer from the top of the key. It sparked an 11-4 run that pushed the Orange ahead 64-55 with just under 9 minutes to play.
Battle hit two 3s and a jumper – all from the top of the key – in the spurt.
“I just try to see what I have,” Battle said. “Most people are just worried about me going by them so much that I just give them a little hesitation and I just rise up sometimes.”
The closest the Eagles got the rest of the way was six points.
Both teams went on good scoring runs in the opening half, which controlled tempo mainly due to SU’s zone dictating the pace and BC’s inability to get out on the break because of the Orange’s solid outside shooting.
Like most home games against SU, BC’s students and fans were drowned out many times by a contingent of fans dressed in Orange that broke into chants of ‘Let’s Go Orange!’
The expected large crowd seemed down a bit and very late arriving, which was likely due to a line of snow squalls that came into the area about an hour before tipoff.
Syracuse: Coming off a lopsided 22-point loss at No. 10 Virginia Tech on Saturday, the Orange got a much-needed bounce-back win. They find themselves in the upper half of the top-heavy ACC standings.
Boston College: The Eagles were looking for their first three-game winning streak in the conference since a four-game streak near the end of the 2014-15 season, which was Christian’s first as head coach. . Freshman guard Wynston Tabbs, their second-leading scorer, missed his second straight because of a left knee injury.
Chatman and Hughes had words, got up into each other and had to be separated midway into the second half, which each getting a technical because of the incident.
The Orange shot 63 percent (17 of 27) in the opening half, including 7 of 14 on 3-point attempts.
BC outscored the Orange 15-5 to go up by nine early in the game before SU went on a 14-0 spree that was triggered by consecutive baskets by Hughes, the second a 3 from the left wing.
Syracuse: At Pittsburgh on Saturday evening.
Boston College: Hosts Notre Dame on Saturday afternoon.
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