Syracuse stops slide, beats Providence 71-64 behind Greene
SYRACUSE, N.Y. (AP)—Donte Greene scored 24 points, including a 3-pointer that broke a late tie and gave Syracuse the lead for good, and the undermanned Orange beat Providence 71-64 on Sunday.
The victory was only the second in six games for Syracuse (14-7, 4-4 Big East), which was coming off a 64-62 overtime loss at No. 9 Georgetown on Monday night. It also was the 764th victory for coach Jim Boeheim, tying Hank Iba for 10th all-time in Division I, one ahead of Connecticut’s Jim Calhoun.
Paul Harris had 14 points, Jonny Flynn had 12, and Arinze Onuaku had eight points and 14 rebounds for Syracuse.
Freshman guard Scoop Jardine was in street clothes on the Syracuse bench, which left the Orange with just seven healthy scholarship players.
Boeheim said Jardine, who had started 10 straight games after Eric Devendorf went down with a season-ending knee injury in December and was averaging 5.2 points, was suspended indefinitely for violation of university policy. Kristof Ongenaet started in place of Jardine and had six points and eight rebounds in a solid 24 minutes.
Dwain Williams led Providence with 21 points, and Jonathan Kale and Jeff Xavier each had 16 points. Geoff McDermott, averaging 11 points a game, failed to score but had 14 rebounds and six assists. Weyinmi Efejuku, the second-leading scorer at 12.3 points, also did not score.
It was the first appearance in the Carrier Dome in nearly three years for Providence (12-7, 3-4), and their long-range prowess deserted them for a little bit too long.
Ice-cold in the first half from beyond the arc, going 1-for-12, the Friars rallied midway through the second as their long-range attack got untracked. After missing five 3s in the first half, Xavier hit his first three attempts in the second. His third moved Providence within 46-44 with 8:51 left and a 3 by Williams tied it at 47-all with 7:40 remaining.
A follow dunk by Jamine Peterson gave Providence 49-47 lead, its first since midway through the first half.
Flynn hit his only 3-pointer of the game and made two free throws to put the Orange back in front 54-50 with 6:01 left, but Xavier’s 3 from the right corner knotted the game at 56-all at 4:21.
After a timeout, Greene drained a 3 from right wing and Harris converted two free throws for a five-point lead and Syracuse made 8-of-10 free throws in the final 1:26 to hold on.
Providence, which entered the game shooting 38.6 percent on 3s, finished 9-for-29 from long range and was outrebounded 47-32, 17-11 on the offensive glass.
Greene, who struggled through a 5-for-19 shooting game against the Hoyas, hit a trio of 3-pointers in a span of 2:11 to break an early tie and send Syracuse on a 12-3 run in the opening minutes of the game.
Greene began his streak with a long shot from left wing and finished it with a fallaway from the top of the key despite a foul by McDermott. A free throw by Harris gave the Orange a 20-11 lead with 7:24 left.
The Friars moved within 20-15 on Kale’s follow at 5:50, but Syracuse, despite only five points combined from Flynn and Onuaku, its second- and third-leading scorers, led 30-21 at halftime largely because of its perimeter defense.