3 takeaways from Syracuse’s 82-72 win over Virginia Tech

Maliq Brown
Jan 11 2023; Syracuse, New York, USA; Syracuse Orange forward Maliq Brown speaks to the media following Syracuse's win over the Virginia Tech Hokies at the JMA Wireless Dome. Mandatory Credit: Brett Gustin/The Juice Online.

Syracuse pulled away late from Virginia Tech to defeat them 82-72 on Wednesday evening. Here are three takeaways from the game:

#1: The Orange hot shooting leads way to victory

Syracuse found its rhythm early against Virginia Tech and it carried through to the final buzzer. While shooting just under 55% from the field in the first half, the Orange were also 50 percent from 3-point range to the Hokies just 2-9 from deep at halftime. The Orange finished shooting 50.8 percent from the field and 8 for 16 from 3-point land. Joe Girard led the way with 24 points on 10-20 shooting and 3-7 from downtown. “It is about just doing the best I can in the spot I am in,” Girard said. “Judah (Mintz) has done a great job controlling the game for us at the one, and he is fierce. He attacks the lane and it opens up a lot for me.”

#2: Syracuse makes adjustments defensively in win

Coming into Wednesday, Virginia Tech was one of the better shooting 3-point teams in the ACC, hitting their shots at a 34.5 percent clip. But Syracuse effectively stymied the Hokies’ deep attack, holding them to just 3-19 from downtown. Though forwards Grant Basile and Justyn Mutts combined for 47 points in 2-point range, Virginia Tech couldn’t quite make up the gap in its outside shooting. Overall, Va. Tech shot just 43 percent from the field in a solid defensive effort for the Orange. “They did a great job in getting the ball inside, and it took us some time before we made some adjustments and made some plays to keep it out of there,” Syracuse head coach Jim Boeheim said. “Jesse (Edwards) also had some opportunities there that he did not take advantage of.”

» Related: Transfers have struggled following Syracuse basketball stints

#3: Strong bench performances factor into Syracuse win

Syracuse had a balanced offensive attack, thanks to one of its best bench performances of the season. The Orange bench outscored the Hokies bench 26-12. Maliq Brown was one of the top contributors, finishing with 11 points and 12 rebounds in 34 minutes off the bench. Justin Taylor also saw extended minutes (28) and chipped in 10 points on 2-3 shooting from 3 “Maliq is playing starter minutes, but it does not matter who starts,” Boeheim said. “He stays around the basket well and he is doing what we need him to do.”

For more Syracuse coverage, like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter and Instagram, and listen to our podcast.

Avatar photo
About Brett Gustin 71 Articles
Brett is from Canastota, NY, and is currently attending Falk college at Syracuse University studying Sports Analytics. Being a Central New York native, Brett has been passionate about Syracuse sports for his whole life. He covers all Syracuse athletics.