THE FLATS – Georgia Tech men’s basketball was unable to climb back from a cold-shooting start, dropping a 97-63 decision to Syracuse on Saturday afternoon at McCamish Pavilion.
The Yellow Jackets (4-3, 1-1 Atlantic Coast Conference) finished shooting 38.1 percent from the field, but couldn’t contend with the Orange’s (5-4, 1-1 ACC) 42.4-percent shooting from downtown and making 14 three-pointers.
Junior forward Moses Wright led Tech, finishing just one rebound shy of his double-double in the span of six days as he hauled in nine rebounds to go along with his team-high 17 points. Junior guard Bubba Parham also finished in double figures, scoring 11 points on the afternoon.
Syracuse was led by redshirt junior Elijah Hughes, who shot an impressive 6-for-11 from three-point range to finish with with 33 points overall, 26 of those in the first half. Sophomore Buddy Boeheim recorded 26 points, while freshman Joseph Girard III (10) and junior Marek Dolezaj (11) also finished in double figures.
Tech returns to action Saturday, Dec. 14, when it travels to face No. 8 Kentucky in Lexington. Tipoff is at 5 p.m. at Rupp Arena, and the game will be televised live on ESPN.
Sophomore Michael Devoe dished out a game-high six assists as Georgia Tech continues to work through an injury-depleted backcourt. (photo by Danny Karnik)
- Syracuse’s 97 points and 34-point margin of victory were highs against the Yellow Jackets in the six-plus-year history of McCamish Pavilion.
- The 34-point loss was Tech largest at home since an 85-48 loss to No. 2 Virginia on Jan. 17, 1981.
- Tech has trailed at halftime in five of seven games this season. The Jackets are 12-42 under Josh Pastner when trailing at the half.
- Syracuse’s 14 three-point field goals were the most for a team against Tech since Boston College hit 14 against the Jackets on March 14, 2013 in the ACC Tournament. The 33 attempts were the most against Tech since the Orange hoisted 33 in the Jackets’ win last year at the Carrier Dome.
- Syracuse became the first team to make 50 percent of its shots from the floor (50.0 pct.) against the Jackets this season. The previous high allowed by Tech, which entered the game fifth in the nation in field goal percentage defense, was 41.5 percent by Georgia on Nov. 20. Everybody else failed to shoot 40 percent.
- Tech, the nation’s leader in blocked shots coming into the game, blocked only two against Syracuse, dropping its average to 7.1 per game this season.
- Tech has connected on just 17-of-66 three-point field goals in its last four games (2-for-11 vs. Arkansas, 2-for-10 vs. Bethune-Cookman, 5-for-23 vs. Nebraska, 7-for-18 vs. Syracuse) after hitting 21-of-63 (33.3 percent) in the first three games of the season.
PASTNER’S KEY METRICS
- Assists to made field goals: Tech has assisted on 103 of 183 field goals (56.3 percent) this season. The Jackets had 19 on 24 made field goals against Syracuse, a season high and far above their nightly goal of 60 percent, which Tech has made four times this season.
- Free throws made to opponents’ attempts: Tech went 7-of-18 from the free throw line against Syracuse, while the Orange were 25-of-30, falling short of accomplishing its nightly mission of making more free throws than the opponent attempts. The Jackets are 41-17 under Josh Pastner when attempting more free throws than the opponent.
- Turnovers: Tech committed 19 in the game to Syracuse’s 17, and the Yellow Jackets have turned the ball over more than their opponent in six of seven games. The Jackets have averaged 17.4 turnovers in seve games, forcing 14.4. Target each night is to commit 11 or fewer, which Tech met only three times last season (all in the last four games) and none this season. More telling for Tech under Josh Pastner is that when Tech has committed fewer turnovers than its opponent, it is 23-15. When it has committed more, it is 26-32.
- Guard rebounding: Tech’s players outside of Banks, Cole and Wright collected four of the Jackets’ 52 defensive rebounds. For the season, they have 89 of the Jackets’ 216 defensive rebounds.
- Michael Devoe, the ACC’s leading scorer coming into today’s action, scored a season-low seven points on 2-of-12 shooting from the floor and 1-of-5 from three-point range. He entered the day’s action leading the nation in three-point shooting (.586). The sophomore had six assists and two steals in 37:39.
- Moses Wright has averaged 15.7 points and 10.0 rebounds over his last three games, and hit 56.4 percent of his shots from the floor (22-of-39) in that stretch. He posted his first career double-double (12 pts, 12 reb) against Bethune-Cookman on Dec. 1 and has missed double-doubles by one rebound each against Nebraska and Syracuse. He had 17 points and nine boards against Syracuse.
- Bubba Parham has averaged 8.6 points with three double-figure games over his last five games. He had 11 against Syracuse including three three-point field goals and is 7-for-22 from distance over those five games.
- Asanti Price knocked down his first triple since game 2 against Elon, having gone 0-for-8 in the four games in between.
- Khalid Moore had a career-best six assists against Syracuse.
- James Banks III did not block a shot for just the fourth time in a Tech uniform and for the first time since last Feb. 27 at Virginia. He has 28 in seven games this season for an average of 4.0, still No. 1 in the ACC and 1.5 per game more than last season.
- Elijah Hughes’ 33 points were the most by a visiting player since McCamish Pavilion opened for the 2012-13 season, and the most for a visiting player on Tech’s home floor since Mercer’s James Florence scored 40 against the Jackets on Nov. 27, 2009.
Behind Wright’s nine, junior forward Evan Cole was the second-leading rebounder for Tech on Saturday, hauling in six on the day. (photo by Danny Karnik)