While Syracuse enters its Atlantic Coast Conference opener feeling good about itself, the same probably can’t be said for Florida State.
The Orange will look to build on a big win when they return to action Saturday against the Seminoles in Tallahassee, Fla. Florida State will try to recover from a lopsided result against one of the nation’s elite teams.
Syracuse (4-3) has not enjoyed the smoothest start to the season — losing to Colgate for the first time since 1962, among other issues — but the Orange showed plenty of character on Tuesday in a 112-110 double-overtime win over Indiana.
Joseph Girard III hit two free throws with 0.8 seconds remaining to propel Syracuse, which also received a combined 53 points from Buddy Boeheim and Jimmy Boeheim.
“These guys have a lot of heart,” Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim said of his team. “They got back, took the lead and we made great plays and got the lead back, and that’s hard to do.”
The Big Ten/ACC Challenge did not go nearly as well for Florida State (5-2, 0-0). The Seminoles were trounced by No. 2 Purdue 93-65, as they trailed by double digits through almost the entire second half and never made much of a push against the loaded Boilermakers.
Florida State was short-handed for the matchup with Purdue, as starting point guard RayQuan Evans missed the game to attend his brother’s funeral and starting center Tanor Ngom sat out with a knee strain.
The Seminoles shot only 41.3 percent from the field and 8 of 24 from 3-point range against Purdue, although there were some bright spots. Caleb Mills scored a season-high 22 points to go with three steals — the sixth time in seven games this season he has recorded multiple steals.
Afterward, coach Leonard Hamilton could only tip his cap to the Boilermakers.
“Sometimes, you’ve got to call it like it is — this team has Final Four written all over it,” Hamilton said.
Syracuse and Florida State did not meet last season. In the teams’ most recent matchup, the Seminoles slipped past the visiting Orange 80-77 on Feb. 15, 2020.
–Field Level Media