SYRACUSE, N.Y. — Clemson was unable to pull off a season sweep of Syracuse, as the Orange took care of business on its home court. The Tigers topped Syracuse 78-61 at home earlier in the season, but the Orange won 64-54 at the Carrier Dome on Wednesday.
The Tigers (15-6, 9-6) recorded a field goal percentage of 33.9, while the Orange (15-8, 9-7) shot 37.5 from the floor. Each team made 10 shots from beyond the arc, and Syracuse won the rebounding battle 39-37. The Tigers dished out 17 assists and scored 28 points off the bench.
Al-Amir Dawes and Alex Hemenway led the Tigers in scoring with 11 points apiece. Both guards sank three 3-pointers. Chase Hunter collected seven points and four assists, and Aamir Simms tallied six points and eight rebounds. Hunter Tyson contributed six points and seven boards, and Clyde Trapp was credited with five assists and five rebounds. For Syracuse, Alan Griffin netted six threes and scored a game-high 22 points.
On the game’s first possession Hunter Tyson scored a putback layup after corralling an offensive rebound. A low-scoring war of attrition took place for the better part of the first half, though, with Syracuse leading 11-9 midway through. In the early goings, Al-Amir Dawes stole the ball and laid it in on the other end after receiving a feed from Aamir Simms. Alex Hemenway knocked down a couple of 3-pointers in the opening half, which ended with the Orange up 25-22.
Syracuse came out firing to start the second half, using an 11-0 run spanning the first 2:31 of the half to build a commanding lead. A trey by Dawes, which Hemenway assisted on, at the 11:28 mark pulled the Tigers within 10, but the Orange led by double digits the rest of the way. Syracuse’s 64-54 victory snapped Clemson’s five-game winning streak.
Clemson will close out the regular season with a contest versus Pittsburgh (10-10, 6-9) on Saturday, March 6. Set to tip off at noon, the matchup between the Tigers and the Panthers will take place at Littlejohn Coliseum in Clemson, S.C. The game can be seen on ACC Network Extra and a regional sports network (RSN).
Get the latest news on all things Clemson men’s basketball by following us on Twitter (@ClemsonMBB), Facebook (/ClemsonMBB) and Instagram (@clemsonmbb).
Head Coach Brad Brownell
Opening statement:“Both teams struggled a little bit offensively early on. I felt like our guys were very passive against the zone in the first half. We just didn’t move the ball like we practiced. Our defense was pretty good in the first half. We did the things we needed to do to stay in the game, but our offense didn’t get better.”
On the keys to the game:“We let [Alan] Griffin get away from us and make threes, and [Syracuse] made easy baskets in transition. [The Orange] played better than we did today, and Griffin’s shooting was a big factor. We needed to play high-level offense, but we didn’t. We didn’t shoot well enough.”