Syracuse post players hold Boston College bigs at bay, expose Eagles weakness down low

first_imgThe biggest man on the floor couldn’t hurt Syracuse. The most hulking figures on Boston College’s were belittled. They got little of the ball and did less with it when they did.The Eagles were always going to live and die by their backcourt, but SU made sure it was the latter. In the Orange’s (14-5, 5-1 Atlantic Coast) 69-61 win over BC (8-9, 0-5) on Tuesday night, Syracuse cut off any relief the visiting post players might provide, exposing a blatant weakness on almost every defensive possession.All 7 feet, 1 inch and 250 pounds of Dennis Clifford would enter the game for Boston College and nothing changed.“I didn’t even notice, to be honest,” SU point guard Kaleb Joseph said.For much of the game, the Eagles couldn’t set up the pass into the paint. The top of the zone was sealed shut by Joseph and Trevor Cooney. And after the first minute, Tyler Roberson joined Michael Gbinije in pressing up the back of the zone so high that BC had no passing lane to the corner.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textThere were Orange defenders glued to the hips of Eagles big men anyway. Rakeem Christmas physically dominated Clifford, Patrick Heckmann and Will Magarity — any of the forwards BC threw his way — on both ends of the floor.And when Christmas left the game with foul trouble, Chinonso Obokoh, who had only logged 43 career minutes prior to Tuesday, kept the Eagles frontcourt at bay as well.“They could’ve hurt us if they had an inside presence right there,” Syracuse head coach Jim Boeheim said.With 3:50 left in the first half, Obokoh stepped out from under the hoop, cutting off Dimitri Batten’s drive at the top of the lane. When the BC guard tried to pass to a forward underneath, Obokoh simply swatted the ball away, keying a Ron Patterson layup at the other end.Most of the time when it came to the post, though, the Eagles didn’t even bother.“They weren’t trying,” Boeheim said of preventing BC from targeting Obokoh. “They were playing a four-out, sometimes a five-out, we were just letting them shoot the 3.”Tuesday’s game was one that could’ve gone horribly wrong. It started with SU not defending corner 3s that the team saw coming days ago in practice. Seventeen minutes and the game’s final 1:51 was played without SU’s best player on the floor.Missed free throws, soft fouls and awkward turnovers followed, turning a matchup against a basic BC team into a scary setup for a bad SU loss.But inside, at least, there was nothing to be afraid of.Said Roberson: “I didn’t let them get in there the rest of the game.” Comments Facebook Twitter Google+ Published on January 20, 2015 at 11:52 pm Contact Jacob: [email protected] | @Jacob_Klinger_last_img

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Leave a Reply

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

Recent Comments