Orange dominate 'Noles
SYRACUSE, N.Y. — Four Syracuse players scored in double figures Thursday night but it was Dajuan Coleman who may have had the biggest impact in the Orange's dominating 85-72 win over Florida State.
Coleman had only two points in the first half but scored Syracuse's first six points of the second half on a dunk, a put-back and reverse layup, then made a beautiful pass that led to a Malachi Richardson layup as the Orange extended a 42-39 halftime lead to a 50-39 margin.
The Orange (17-8, 7-5 ACC) never looked back, eventually building a 24-point lead in beating the Seminoles (16-8, 6-6 ACC).
Michael Gbinije led Syracuse with 22 points. Richardson had 17, Tyler Lydon 15 and Trevor Cooney 10 as Syracuse won its fourth straight and seventh in its last eight outings. The Orange shot 31 of 50 for 62 percent, their best percentage of the season, and 8 of 17 from 3-point range.
"I was trying to be more aggressive (in the second half)," Coleman said. "Going on that run was fun. We got a good lead out of that and I think I got everybody going after that."
"Dajuan gave us a really big start to the second half by going up and dunking that one and then getting a rebound and making a move all the way from the high post," said Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim, whose team is 7-2 since his return from an NCAA suspension. "Those were really good momentum plays.
"The fact that he got those six straight points and we went up nine or 10, he had a big effect on the game."
Gbinije, who has scored in double figures in all 25 games, also credited Coleman's effort.
"DC (Coleman) was huge to open the second half. We know it's tough not to play for two years but he's getting it going. He's a really good player," Gbinije said of his teammate, who missed most of the last two seasons to a series of knee injuries.
Devon Bookert led Florida State with 15 points. Malik Beasley had 14 and Dwayne Bacon 11. The loss snapped a four-game winning streak.
Syracuse outscored Florida State 43-22 in the second half on the strength of 71 percent shooting. The Seminolesthen closed out the scoring on an 11-0 run.
"I was very disappointed in our defensive field-goal percentage," said Florida State coach Leonard Hamilton. "They took advantage of every defensive breakdown. Our biggest challenge tonight was overcoming their experience and their execution."
The Orange hit 15 of 23 from the field in the second half, including 3 of 7 from 3-point range. For the game, Syracuse was 8 of 17 from beyond the arc.
"It was a really good offensive game for us," Boeheim said. "We were patient and kept waiting until we got a good drive situation."
Despite a poor first half, Florida State trailed by only three at intermission — 42-39 — on a 3-pointer by Bookert at the buzzer, and thought the worst was behind them. Instead, the worst was yet to come.
"We felt really good at halftime," Beasley said. "They were shooting 60 percent from the field and we were down only 3. It was a great sign, but they did a good job."
The Orange outscored the Seminoles 16-3 in the first four minutes of the second half and hit seven of their first 10 shots, including two 3-pointers by Gbinije.
Florida State: Florida State's Malik Beasley is the only current ACC freshman and first in school history to score in double figures in each of his first 23 collegiate games. ... The Seminoles average 79 points a game, highest since 1992, but turn the ball over 14 times a contest.
Syracuse: The Orange leads the ACC in 3-point shooting defense at 27 percent. . Four of Tyler Roberson's six double-doubles have been in ACC games. Syracuse is 6-0 when Roberson has a double-double. . Michael Gbinije has scored in double figures in all 25 games.
NUMBERS TO KNOW
66 — Roberson has 66 more offensive rebounds this season than any Seminole.
0.7 — Less than one steal per game separates Syracuse (8.1) and Florida State (7.4), the top two teams in the ACC in terms of takeaways per game.
Florida State hosts Miami Sunday.
Syracuse is at Boston College Sunday.