Instant Juice: Syracuse 60, Kansas 72

battle

Battle’s 20 was not enough for Syracuse

A quick take on Syracuse’s 76-60 loss against Kansas on Saturday evening in Miami in the Hoophall Invitational:

WHAT HAPPENED: Devonte Graham scored Kansas’ final 14 points of the first half, turning a tight 21-17 game with 5:16 left to a 35-21 at intermission. That lead would balloon up to as many as 21 points early in the second half before Syracuse cut the lead to nine points with 4:03 to go. But a Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk with 3:17 left put the Jayhawks up 73-60, and the Orange couldn’t close the gap from there.

» Related: Kansas the one Syracuse opponent that will be forever linked with the program

ANALYSIS: Two issues that Syracuse will have to grapple all season were on display against the No. 2 team in the country: Perimeter defense and poor outside shooting. SU struggled to locate Graham the whole night, and he made them pay, hitting seven 3-pointers, among 11 shots that Kansas hit from beyond the arc. On the flip side the Orange  spent the majority of Saturday in the offensive doldrums, shooting 6-27 from downtown and 32 percent from the field. Too much of Syracuse’s offense came on isolation plays, as evidenced by just nine assists on SU’s 18 field goals.

HERO: Graham continued his recent offensive tear, reaching 30+ points for the second straight game, finishing with 35. He was joined by Lagerald Vick’s 20. For Syracuse, Tyus Battle’s 20 points paced them, though he shot just 2-11 from downtown.

ZERO: Oshae Brissett struggled through a 3-13 shooting night, though he did finish with 13 points and nine rebounds.

WHAT’S NEXT: Syracuse stays on neutral court, playing at Maison Square Garden against old Big East foe UCONN on Tuesday at 9 p.m. in New York City. TV: ESPN.

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Wes Cheng

About Wes Cheng

Wes has worked for Rivals.com covering the New York Knicks, as well as for Scout.com covering Syracuse athletics. Wes has also worked for the South China Morning Post (Hong Kong) and reported on the NBA and MLB for the New York Sportscene. A native of Long Island, New York, Wes graduated from Syracuse University in 2005. Follow him on Twitter @ChengWes.

Syracuse, lacking answers for Devonte Graham, fall to Kansas
In Photos: Syracuse 81, Northwestern 74

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