Buddy Boeheim, sounding like his father, ignites Syracuse basketball

Buddy Boeheim
Dec 28, 2019: Syracuse Orange guard Buddy Boehiem dribbles around Niagara Purple Eagle defenders at the Carrier Dome. Mandatory Photo Credit: Kicia Sears, The Juice Online.

Like father, like son.

After scoring a game-high 22 points in SU’s impressive 26-point victory over Boston College, Buddy Boeheim sounded like his Hall of Fame coach father after the Orange won its first ACC game under the Dome this season.

Boeheim, the sophomore sharp-shooter, drilled his first 3-point field goal nearly six minutes into the game-it was only his team’s second field goal of the game-and proceeded to outscore the visitors from Beantown all by himself. Yet, he is not about to take all the credit. It was the Orange’s stingy zone defense–the defensive scheme that has shown a bit of life over the past two games—that stifled the Eagles.

“It’s encouraging that it was a great team effort tonight,” Boeheim said. “Our defense has gotten a lot better.”

Then he added, “But we still have a lot of work to do.”

Hmm. Could coaching be in his future?

» Related: Syracuse basketball is still alive in a wide-open ACC

While the win evened SU’s ACC mark to 3-3 heading into Saturday’s rematch with the Virginia Tech Hokies, Buddy said it was the team’s focus that took the Eagles out of sync. In the game’s first 20 minutes, SU sported a measly 11-7 lead with nearly 12 minutes gone. Then Boeheim, who has worked on his inside game, hit a quick seven points to get the offense back on track. SU held a 38-13 advantage at the half. Boeheim tallied 15.

“We made some adjustments (this week) and took them out of their rhythm,” Buddy Boeheim said.

At the beginning of the year, Coach Boeheim knew it would take this squad some time to gel and for the newcomers to understand “what we’re trying to do out there.”

Both Boeheims point to the team’s work in practice sessions that has fueled the recent success.

“We’ve done some things differently on defense and that’s helped us a little bit,” the coach said. “I think we’re playing better.”

On offense, Buddy said it was all about getting the right mindset and setting the tone.

“We were more aggressive on offense by running plays to create space,” he said. “We knew we were capable. Now, we have to build off this and keep getting better.”

The coach put it best.

“This was a solid win for us.”

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John Zych
About John Zych 24 Articles
John is an active freelance writer, photographer and editor. His credits include being an official photographer at the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Central New York Ms. Orange Fan Luncheon and regularly contributing to SU Athletics.com and Eagle Newspapers. Prior to that, he was the managing Editor and journalist for several community newspaper groups from 1985-1997 including the Oneida Dispatch, Eagle Newspapers and Taconic Media (Millbrook, NY).