MBB : PERFECTLY FRUSTRATED: Syracuse remains undefeated with win over Iona despite sloppy play

by ,

first_img Published on December 17, 2010 at 12:00 pm Comments The game was an appropriate continuation of Syracuse’s non-conference slate. The scene of SU head coach Jim Boeheim exploding on Kris Joseph for giving up an easy Iona layup only extended a common theme. Tangible frustration still lingers for a team that has coasted to near the top of the national rankings.Saturday was the latest example. Boeheim felt his team played well offensively against an Iona team he lauded. But defense is another story. The Gaels notched 46 second-half points against SU, enough to occasionally make the head coach squirm.His team played well. But SU is still not doing enough. Evidenced by Iona forward Mike Glover’s 25 points. The team may now be a perfect 11-0 with the 83-77 win. But its play is far from perfect.‘We didn’t play as well on defense,’ Boeheim said. ‘We played really well on offense. And defensively they only shot it 29 percent from 3. That is reasonable. We didn’t do anything on Glover.’Added Boeheim: ‘Glover got loose behind us more than anyone has in a long time.’AdvertisementThis is placeholder textGlover’s highlight-reel alley-oop dunks were evidence that holes still exist in Syracuse’s play. And Boeheim’s sideline antics Saturday were evidence that those holes continue to fester at inopportune times — whether those mishaps are defensive lapses or poor shot selection from Kris Joseph.During that tirade pointed at Joseph in the first half, Boeheim fumed in front of 17,871 in the Carrier Dome.Joseph led SU in the first half with 11 points, finishing with a team-high 21. But against another inferior opponent, he was lazy. On the play Joseph didn’t stop an Iona attack, yielding an easy layup. The Gaels pulled to within seven with 6:16 left in the half.Boeheim screamed for a timeout. He locked his eyes on his star player. And 11 games worth of the head coach’s frustration exploded on Joseph.As Boeheim lashed out at Joseph, his eyes widened and his face flushed with anger. But Joseph brushed it off, as well as the tempo of the game.‘We have been in this position before,’ Joseph said, ‘so it is nothing new to us.’Same story, different day was the feeling in the Carrier Dome. In both good and bad ways for Joseph and SU. Syracuse scored 80 points for the fourth time in eleven games. SU racked up 26 fast-break points. And once again, the Orange outpaced and outran the lights-out performance of its opponents’ best player this time Glover.‘I’ve known Glover since he was in high school. He has always been a good player,’ SU guard Scoop Jardine said. ‘He has polished his game. He is one of the top players in the country.’But perhaps most importantly, once again SU made Boeheim cringe and talk to himself for long stretches.In another statistically shining game for SU, the team shot 59.3 percent from the field. SU set a frantic pace for the game as Dion Waiters, James Southerland and Joseph all put in highlight-reel dunks and alley-oops.But the Gaels a team without a bench stuck with Boeheim’s horses. The Gaels starting five played 181 of the 200 possible total minutes they could have played Saturday. Five players ran with SU’s eight-man rotation all game. A rotation that took a hit when Fab Melo and C.J. Fair didn’t play in the second half due to injuries. Melo is fighting a lingering sore Achilles, while Fair injured his ankle.Iona was down only seven with fewer than two minutes left, scoring more against SU than any of its prior 10 opponents.But what drove Boeheim bonkers – enough to stare down at the Carrier Dome sideline and scream to himself at the top of his lungs — was the sporadic sloppiness of a team viewed as one of the nation’s best.The second scene of Boeheim screaming came at the 8:50 mark of the second half. After Joseph airballed a 3-pointer – one of his only three misses on the night – Boeheim looked to the ground and vented. All the head coach could do was scream, ‘Why?’The Orange was still up 62-52 and would hang on, but it was far from perfect.The frustration resides. And the end-of-game situation where SU’s 13-point lead dwindled to a final margin of six reflected that. Boeheim kidded after the game about the reoccurring frantic end-of-game scenarios. They are occurring a little too much.‘We have had a lot of practice at it so far,’ Boeheim said. ‘That is what I think.’[email protected]center_img Facebook Twitter Google+last_img

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *