Cuse Country

Home Away From Dome for Syracuse Orange Fans

It’s About Time

Posted by Josh on December 23, 2006

It’s about time SU pulled away from an inferior opponent relatively early in the game, and then maintained the lead throughout.

It’s about time Paul Harris snapped out of his funk and started reasserting himself on both ends of the floor.

It’s about time Devendorf remembered that what makes him a good player is his ability to drive the lane and score or (especially in this game) draw contact: “Tonight, I decided I was just going to go out and play,” said Devendorf, who had reached double figures only once in the previous six games. “I played like I used to. I needed to get some confidence back.”(From the AP game story)

It’s about time that…we got some points from the walk-ons! Namely, Justin Thomas, number 0, who is a dead ringer for James Thues with his headband on. First walk-on hoop of the year, on a nice fadeaway jumper from the left side. (He also made a nice steal, intercepting a pass into the paint.)

It’s about time that Watkins played well against a smaller team. His stats are somewhat pedestrian, but make no mistake about it, he was a force inside. I find it hard to believe that he only had 9 rebounds; it seemed like he was snatching errant shots out of the air with authority time and time again. The official rebounding numbers (SU at -2 overall) are deceiving. Hofstra’s plethora of offensive boards came mainly because they were missing so many three-pointers, resulting in long rebounds that were just as likely to bounce to an Orange as to a Pride. (Proud?) SU did dominate this game in the paint, as they should have against the smaller, inexperienced Hofstra front line. But they have failed to dominate against other smaller teams so this was a step in the right direction.

It’s about time the defense rattled a heretofore good-shooting team. True, Hofstra missed some open shots that they’d normally hit, but the zone was for the most part effective at getting hands in their faces. Moreso than in previous games I’ve seen. In fact, any such ‘lucky misses’ were nearly balanced out by a couple early ‘lucky makes’ that Pride players somehow hit when they had no reasonable right to do so.

While one can’t reasonably expect SU to shoot this well from 3 (or from the line) consistently, it was fun to watch and made for a relaxed confidence-builder-type game, that was all the more fun to take in from a cushy metal bench in section 111. Other than the assortment of “brain-freeze” turnovers (fewer than usual, and generally corrected by the middle of the first half) and Josh Wright’s ill-advised dunk attempt on a fast break, things were clicking pretty well for the Orange. It was a refreshing change from the Drexel debacle. More like the typical December games of old.

One note: Kueth Duany and Preston Shumpert were both in the house to get some love from the crowd. (Shumpert was cut by Climamio Bologna in the past couple days but immediately signed by another Italian team, Bennetton Treviso. More on this tomorrow.) I’m pretty sure they put Preston on the Kiss Cam — if that was him, his female companion was gorgeous. Perhaps some Italian model.

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