Quick Hits: Justin Taylor plays critical stretch for Syracuse

Justin Taylor BC
Dec 31, 2022; Syracuse, New York, USA; Syracuse Orange forward Justin Taylor speaks to the media following Syracuse's win over the Boston College Eagles at the JMA Wireless Dome. Mandatory Credit: Jim Stechschulte/The Juice Online.

Syracuse defeated Boston College on Saturday afternoon, 79-65. Here are some quick hits from the game:

  • While the Orange held on to win, the interior defense was lacking, particularly in the second half. The official shot chart lists Boston College with 28 lay-up attempts in the game, but Syracuse was fortunate that they only made half of those shots. The Eagles were credited with 18 lay-up attempts in the second half alone.

  • While BC had lot of shots in the paint, so did Orange point guard Judah Mintz. All of his eight field goals were in the paint with the farthest one being a floater coming just outside the restricted area.
  • Jim Boeheim officially declared the playing time derby back on for the forwards. Maliq Brown had already replaced Benny Williams less than three minutes into the game, then Quadir Copeland replaced Chris Bell less than three minutes later. John Bol Ajak swapped in for Brown a minute later, then Justin Taylor replaced Copeland shortly after the midpoint of the half, making it six different forwards on the floor in the first 11 minutes.
  • The winners, at least for one day? Benny Williams and Justin Taylor. While Williams sat out much of the first half, he played the final 23:45 of the game, scoring seven points late in the first half to help build the nine-point intermission lead and 16 overall. After making little first half contribution in a little over six minutes, Taylor played the last 13:16 of the game, connecting on two treys when the Orange made their move to take control of the game.
  • All eight of Jesse Edwards’ rebounds came in the first half. Two fouls in a span of 1:05 of the second half sent Edwards to the bench for over 12 minutes.
  • Historically, Syracuse has a bad reputation for its free throw shooting. This season, the seven players who have seen the most court time are each shooting above 70 percent from the line. Collectively, they are shooting 76.4 percent on free throws.

» Related: This trio holds the key to success for Syracuse’s season


Tuesday night, Syracuse will travel to Louisville for their first contest of 2023. The Cardinals (2-12, 0-3 ACC) dropped their first nine games of the season and things have only gotten slightly better since. Their only loss against a major conference opponent where the margin was under 21 points was a 76-64 loss at North Carolina State on December 22.

Louisville has struggled on offense this season, averaging 61.4 points per game. Guard El Ellis tops the Cards with 17.5 points and 4.1 assists per game, as well as 27 three-pointers on the campaign. Forwards Brandon Huntley-Hatfield and Jae’Lyn Withers combine for just under 16 points per game in support of Ellis.

ESPNU will televise Tuesday’s action between the Orange and Cardinals with tip off set for 7:00pm Eastern.


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About Jim Stechschulte 894 Articles
A 1996 graduate of Syracuse University, Jim has reported on Syracuse sports for the Syracuse University Alumni Club of Southern California on nearly a decade. He has also written a fantasy basketball column published by NBA.com. He currently resides in Syracuse.