Syracuse withstood four shot attempts in the last possession from Georgia Tech, including three from leading scorer Michael Devoe, to hold on for a 74-73 overtime win on Monday night. Neither side was able to score in the final 1:36, but the Orange (15-12, 9-7 ACC) held on to keep their hopes of a winning season alive.
The Yellow Jackets (11-16, 4-12) forced overtime by making four foul shots over three trips to the line in the final 3:02 of the second half, completing a six-point comeback in the final five minutes of regulation. SU’s Jimmy Boeheim had the last shot in regulation, but could not connect on a drive to the basket.
The Jackets scored eight straight points to take an early lead and added two more baskets to stretch their lead to 12-3 before the game was five minutes old. Syracuse responded by scoring 20 of the game’s next 26 points to grab a 23-18 lead with eight minutes left in the half. Jimmy Boeheim and Joe Girard III did most of the heavy lifting in that time, tallying 14 points for the Orange in that span.
That lead was short lived, however, as Georgia Tech responded with a 9-0 burst a couple minutes later to secure their own five-point lead. SU bounced back by outscoring the guests over the rest of the half, 8-3, to make it a 33-33 game at the break.
Syracuse scored the first five points out of the locker room, but the Yellow Jackets answered with a 10-4 run to nose in front once more at 43-42 just over five minutes into the second half. The Orange grabbed the lead right back, eventually extending the margin to 59-53, but a pair of Georgia Tech triples erased that gap.
SU answered with baskets on their next two trips, but the guests whittled away over the final three minutes to force overtime. The two squads swapped the lead several times in the extra period until a Buddy Boeheim trey gave them the lead for good and a pair of Jimmy Boeheim foul shots enabled Syracuse to withstand a three-pointer with 1:36 remaining and two more GT possessions that came up empty.
Jimmy Boeheim led all scorers with 20 points, including 15 in the first half, while grabbing ten rebounds for his fifth double-double of the season. Cole Swider also had his fifth double-double of the campaign, posting 18 points and a dozen boards, notching four triples in the contest. Buddy Boeheim struggled in the first half, but rebounded to finish with 15 points while Joe Girard III added 12 points and had three steals. Frank Anselem grabbed ten rebounds.
Rodney Howard topped the Yellow Jackets with a career-high 19 points to go along with ten rebounds. Jordan Usher added 14 points and led all players with 13 boards. Michael Devoe also had 14 points, including four three-pointers in the game.