Battle, Brissett combine for 45 of Syracuse’s 63 points in tight win over Cornell

first_imgOshae Brissett and Tyus Battle controlled the game right from the tip Saturday. When Brissett rose up for the jump ball, he didn’t tip it back, as he usually does. Instead, he slapped it forward in front of Battle, Syracuse’s shooting guard. The 6-foot-6 junior did the rest as he glided to the right side of the rim for a lay-in.Syracuse (5-2) relied on its leading scorers from a year ago, Battle and Brissett, to squeak by Cornell (4-4) on Saturday in the Carrier Dome, 63-55. Battle (26) and Brissett (19) combined for 45 points, their most together this season. The first time both of SU’s stars shot above 50 percent in a game was Wednesday at Ohio State. They repeated the feat Saturday. The win extended the Orange’s winning streak to three-in-a-row, as Jim Boeheim and Buddy Boeheim claimed victory over Jimmy Boeheim.“Tyus and Oshae just played well enough for us to win,” Boeheim said. “Other than that, there was nothing really good tonight at all.”The Big Red got off to the game’s hotter start, eventually leading 19-14 midway through the first half. But the Orange went on a 12-0 run from there, spurred by a Buddy 3-pointer and then nine-straight points from Brissett.But about two and a half minutes after that run, the frame remained imperfect for the Orange, as Cornell star Matt Morgan knocked down a 3 from the right wing, directly in front of Boeheim. SU’s 43-year head coach yanked off his sport coat and threw it in frustration. Still, Battle answered right back to send Syracuse into halftime on a high note.AdvertisementThis is placeholder text“We weren’t in sync, we weren’t really executing at all, but Tyus kind of pulled us out of it,” Boeheim said.First, Battle hit a running jumper for two points. Then, he stepped into a 3-pointer on the right wing while no Big Red players stood within five feet of him. Battle drained it to put the Orange up nine at half.Right out of the break, Brissett dished to Paschal Chukwu for a layup. A few trips later, Battle threw an entry pass to Brissett on the left block, then slid to the top of the key. Brissett found the junior who knocked down another 3.“Myself and Tyus, we put in the work for games like this where our numbers are called heavily,” Brissett said.Wherever Battle caught it, he looked to score and did. A few minutes after the 3 from Brissett, he drove baseline, hesitated and stepped-through for a reverse lay-in.It was well removed from Battle’s 3-for-10 outing on opening night and Brissett’s 5-for-27 stretch at Madison Square Garden in mid-November. For one night, they both appeared to solve the issues that plagued them earlier in the season.“I really forget about those,” Brissett said of the MSG games and laughed. “Kinda weird everyone keeps bringing those games up. Just two games, we put it behind us and we’re moving forward.”Battle hadn’t found his 3-point shot after offseason work with trainer Drew Hanlen. But he made two 3s against Ohio State and made another four against the Big Red. He said nothing has changed, just that he’s kept getting shots up in practice.After Cornell had taken a one-point lead with less than six minutes to go, Battle answered with a 3 from the left wing to put the Orange back up two.“I was just missing shots, we played like two games and I didn’t make shots,” Battle said. “It happens, slumps happen. I’m making them, so it’s all good now.”Brissett had been overly reliant on a fine-tuned outside shot, which didn’t work at MSG, and struggling to finish at the basket. But he found the balance on Saturday, scoring three times inside the arc in the first half and then knocking down two 3s in the second.Last year, SU needed Battle and Brissett to lead the way almost every night, with some Frank Howard thrown in. This year, supplementary scoring joined the Orange in the form of Elijah Hughes, Jalen Carey and Buddy. But on some nights, Syracuse will simply need its best players to deliver. In a game against Cornell that stayed tight for a long time, Battle and Brissett did just that.“Tyus came up big for us, and that’s what we want him to do,” Brissett said. “We want him to take those shots. We believe in him, once he gets the ball in his hot spots, it’s on me just to go grab the rebound if he misses.”Battle put the finishing touches on it, too. With about a minute left, he put a big left to right crossover move on his defender as the shot clock wound down. The crowd “ooh-ed.” Two dribbles right later, he faded away between two defenders and drained it once more. Syracuse needed almost every bit.“I love it,” Battle said of stepping up when SU needs him. “That’s what I do. That’s when I’m at my best. I don’t feel a burden or pressure.” Comments Facebook Twitter Google+center_img Published on December 1, 2018 at 10:09 pm Contact Billy: [email protected] | @Wheyen3last_img

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