|Posted on November 7, 2022 at 10:05 PM|
Article by Dan Tortora
The Syracuse Orange men's basketball program began their 2022-23 campaign as they do from year-to-year, at home in the Dome, but this time around in the JMA Wireless Dome, hosting the Lehigh Mountain Hawks in this their fifth overall meeting. with Syracuse leading the series 4-0.
Lehigh got on the board first, scoring on their opening possession off of a jumper by junior forward/center Dominic Parolin just 27 seconds into the contest.
Senior center Jesse Edwards would answer immediately on a layup to tie the game at two-apiece.
There were four ties overall by the media timeout with 10:24 remaining on the first-half clock.
During this same break in the action, Orange Head Coach Jim Boeheim, in his 47th season, put returning point guard Symir Torrence in the game for Mintz, along with guard Quadir Copeland and forward Maliq Brown, both true freshmen, who gave sophomore forward Benny Williams and true freshman forward Chris Bell a break.
Mintz returned shortly after, at the 9:09 mark, subbing in for Girard, leaving two point guards on the floor for Syracuse, Torrence and Mintz. He would score back-to-back field goals to have eight points by eight minutes remaining in the first half, rolling the Orange ahead 23-19.
With 6:58 left on the first-half game clock, Mintz had already attained double-figures in his collegiate debut, with 10 points after going 2-for-2 at the charity stripe.
With 4:36 remaining, the Mountain Hawks had accumulated 10 fouls, giving the Orange two shots no matter the foul the rest of the way. Girard made both free throws that came from the foul by junior guard Jalin Sinclair.
Senior point guard Symir Torrence would take a three with a defender on him, sending it home through the nylon to give Syracuse their first double-digit lead of the first half, 36-24.
True freshman forward Chris Bell would make his first-ever collegiate field-goal attempt, a three-ball with 2:07 left in the opening half, giving Syracuse a 41-26 advantage.
On the next defensive stance, sophomore transfer center Mounir Hima would block the Mountain Hawks not once, but twice, with his first collegiate swats coming back-to-back.
He would grab his first collegiate rebounds on the same possession, both off of missed jumpers by Girard, and Hima would get his first collegiate points on his layup that followed the second offensive board, coming at the 3:03 mark.
Girard would launch a three with approximately four seconds remaining and cash in, giving Syracuse a 44-26 lead at the break on the last field goal made in the first half.
Mintz would opening up the scoring for the Orange in the second half, taking the ball downcourt all by himself and up off the glass on the left side at the 18:13 mark, giving him 12 points at this juncture.
Girard would find Edwards for the alley-oop dunk and then follow with an old-fashioned three-point play, taking the bump and connecting on the baseline jumper. These plays would aid Girard to 19 points and three assists before taking a break at the 12:06 mark when Torrence came in for his first action of the second half.
With 8:57 remaining, Edwards would secure his double-double thanks to an offensive rebound, giving him 19 points and 10 rebounds.
Another positive for the big man was that he picked up his first foul of the game with 9:14 left in the match-up.
Following his fourth rebound of his collegiate debut, true freshman guard Justin Taylor would attain his first collegiate points on a turnaround jumper inside.
Fellow true freshman, guard Quadir Copeland, would connect on a jumper on the very next possession for his first points of his collegiate career.
Of the 12 players on the court for the Orange, 11 scored: Girard with 19, Edwards with 18, Mintz with 16, Torrence with 10, true freshman forward Maliq Brown with seven, Copeland with six, Bell with five, redshirt-junior forward John Bol Ajak with three, and Williams, Taylor, and Hima each with two.
Despite being the lone player that did not score for Syracuse, true freshman center Peter Carey did grab his first rebound and block his first shot in his collegiate debut.
Syracuse totaled it all up for 90 points in an 18-point victory, 90-72, to keep their winning percentage versus Lehigh at 100%, with a 5-0 record.
Senior guard Evan Taylor was the lone Mountain Hawk to reach double-figures, with 20.