Brycen Goodine’s game-winning putback lifts Syracuse over Wake Forest, 75-73

first_img Facebook Twitter Google+ Brycen Goodine shouldn’t have been on the court with the score tied and five seconds left. But the freshman watched Elijah Hughes and the ball operate atop the key, stood in front of the Syracuse bench before filling the baseline. He figured his defender would also track the second-leading scorer in the Atlantic Coast Conference, not the freshman who’d appeared in 13 games total. The pass Goodine originally looked for when he reached the paint wasn’t there so he switched sides. Fellow freshman Jesse Edwards battled over two bodies and tipped Hughes’ miss to Goodine. Seconds later, Goodine kissed the bank shot off the glass and averted disaster for Syracuse. “I didn’t even realize what had happened when it happened,” Goodine said postgame. All season, Orange coaches wanted Goodine in the lane, he said. His inaction has partially kept him off the floor. On Saturday night, however, Goodine acquiesced and defeated Wake Forest in the process. Wake Forest enforced its second-half plan, while the Orange, according to head coach Jim Boeheim, were “sleeping” for most of the frame. Defensive lapses eroded SU’s double-digit lead. Foul troubles cast away three key Syracuse players. Having the game in the hands of Edwards, then Goodine — who scored his first bucket since Jan. 22 at Notre Dame — was what Wake Forest wanted. But the never-before-seen, or practiced, unit of Edwards, Goodine, Hughes, Joe Girard III and Buddy Boeheim at small forward prevailed.It started when Buddy volunteered himself for the three-position after Marek Dolezaj drew his second technical foul. And it ended when Andrien White’s three-quarter-court heave bounced off the backboard. The unheralded group ended Syracuse’s  (14-9, 7-5 ACC) losing skid, carrying it through the final 5:42 of a 75-73 win over Wake Forest (10-13, 3-10). AdvertisementThis is placeholder text“It’s fitting, a little,” Boeheim said while chuckling postgame. “That was a heck of a play. Two freshmen who don’t play much.” The newly-released net rankings have SU 64th, seventh in the ACC. The win over 105th-ranked Wake Forest kept the status quo in check. Five-straight wins reset the season. Two losses grounded expectations. And Saturday night’s win set the stage for the season’s final third. The Orange are still looking for a big conference win, yet proved again they can handle everybody else. Both sides started slowly. Aside from a Dolezaj coast-to-coast lay in, Wake Forest’s 2-3 zone kept the ball on the perimeter initially. Girard clanged an open floater on one possession and fired a pass to no one, ricocheting the ball off the hoop’s padding. As they would for much of the first half, the Demon Deacons sought lanes inside the paint. Seven-foot center Olivier Sarr, who entered the contest averaging 13 points and 9.4 rebounds per game, hurled himself toward the rim for sporadic results. Offensive rebounds skittered away from Sarr and into white jerseys. After three forwards fouled out in the second half, including freshman Quincy Guerrier, Syracuse operated with a lineup it hadn’t used before. Max Freund | Staff PhotographerThe Orange’s offense mainly featured the guards running two-man games, hunting for a shooting platform. Defensively, as it did to Pittsburgh and Boston College, SU zoned a bad shooting team to mostly positive results. It doubled Sarr whenever the center touched the ball inside the arc. Syracuse forced Wake Forest’s leading-scorer Brandon Childress (15.3 points per game) to facilitate, pressuring him as others stood around. Late in the first half, the Demon Deacons notched a few buckets late in the shot clock. Buddy matched a Jahcobi Neath 3 with his own 3-pointer 23 seconds later. And when Syracuse opened the second half with a 7-0 run, it was Wake Forest’s turn to answer back. White — brother of former SU guard Andrew White — capped the visitor’s own 7-0 stretch with a 3. “This game should’ve been safe,” Boeheim said. The pace slowed to Wake Forest’s liking and a team that registers nearly one-fourth of its points at the free throw line attempted 27, missing just six. The Demon Deacons charged the lane and disrupted game flow. Quincy Guerrier tallied his fifth foul with 9:49 left, Bourama Sidibe followed nine seconds later. When Buddy clanged a free throw with SU up one, he threw his head back. On the sideline, Boeheim discarded his black sport coat.Sarr then delivered Wake its first lead with a lay-up in the final six minutes. Referees checked at least three calls at the scorer’s table in the second half. They drew boos from the crowd, screams from the Orange bench and, eventually, expletives after issuing two technical fouls to Dolezaj in a minute. During the mid-game huddle, Buddy offered himself at forward. He only played the three-role a few times in practice during the last two years, Buddy said. Meanwhile, Boeheim turned to Goodine for his defensive and rebounding abilities. The unit mustered four steals, two of which came from Edwards. It also featured a four-out set on offense, giving room for Hughes to carry the workload. Edwards and Goodine each contributed an important late rebound, but none more apparent than the last. “You gotta admire that group that was on the court the last four minutes,” Boeheim said. “…We didn’t have anybody out there. It was a tremendous effort.” Commentscenter_img Published on February 8, 2020 at 10:36 pm Contact Nick: nialvare@syr.edu | @nick_a_alvarezlast_img

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