Orange Eke By Georgia Tech, 2-0 In ACC
A pair of clutch free-throws in the closing seconds and good defense in the game's final ten minutes helped the Syracuse Orange squeak past Georgia Tech on Wednesday, 46-45, moving 'Cuse to 2-0 in ACC play.
Senior Rakeem Christmas was fouled with under 15 seconds to play and his team trailing by one point. He drilled both to put Syracuse ahead - his 17th and 18th points of the game - and the Orange (11-4, 2-0 ACC) staved off a desperation scramble in the final seconds.
The Yellow Jackets' Chris Bolden missed a 3-pointer and a possible game-winning put-back at the buzzer was off target by sophomore forward Quinton Stephens. It was all part of a dry spell that saw Georgia Tech go without scoring a field goal in the final eight-plus minutes of action.
Following Saturday's 68-66 win over Virgina Tech, Jim Beoheim's Orange have won their first two conference games by a total of three points. However, both came on the road.
Christmas' 18 was game high. Michael Gbinije added 14 points and 10 rebounds. Six-foot-ten freshman Chris McCullough had only three points on 1-7 shooting. Trevor Cooney scored nine on 3-10 shooting.
The team's 46 points was by far the fewest of the season, 11 points fewer than they scored in a loss to St. John's at the Carrier Dome last month.
Georgia Tech (9-5, 0-2 ACC) was paced by Charles Mitchell's 17 points and 11 boards.
Up next, Syracuse hosts Florida State (9-6, 1-1 ACC) on Sunday night at 8:00.