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Syracuse Beats Duke In OT, 21 and Oh What A Game!

Carrier Dome - Syracuse vs. Duke, Feb 1, 2014
(Photo by Justin Cortese/WIBX)

It was a night of records at the Carrier Dome in Syracuse on Saturday night as the No. 2 Orange defeated the No. 17 Duke Blue Devils 91 – 89 in overtime and Syracuse remained undefeated.

The Firsts

• It was the largest crowd ever in on-campus college basketball history with a crowd of 35,446  • It was the first meeting between Duke and Syracuse on campus and in the ACC  • It turned out to be the first time in program history that Syracuse has gone to 21-0  • It was a game between the two winningest coaches in Division I College Basketball history, both with a combined 1,914 wins; that is until tonight.

The 1,915th combined win as the two teams went head to head, will forever belong to Syracuse.

Coach Jim Boeheim said before the game, this was the ‘most hyped game in his 38 years coaching at Syracuse,’ and the game certainly lived up to the hype.

“We’ve had a lot of games that have been here that are great. There’s never been one as good as this one,” Boeheim said.

The game belonged to Syracuse at the end of regulation (or at least it seemed that way) with the Orange leading 78-75.  That’s when Duke’s Rasheed Sulaimon’s buzzer-beater with an off-balance 3-pointer shocked the Dome and tied the game at 78, sending it into overtime.

Duke maintained the momentum into the extra period and led 87-84 with under 90 seconds to play; but, that’s when Syracuse rallied. The Orange charged back with a 7-2 run and Duke’s final shot, a Quinn Cook toss at the buzzer was unsuccessful and the Dome erupted.

Jerami Grant scored eight points in overtime and ended up with a career high, 24-points and 12 rebounds on the night and C. J. Fair had a career-best 28 points to lead the Orange to their best start ever. Trevor Cooney and Tyler Ennis each scored 14 for Syracuse.

Duke had a productive night with the long-ball netting 45-points from 3-point range. Their 3-point percentage wasn’t nearly as impressive as they went 15 of 36 from outside the perimeter.  At least three Blue Devils were in serious foul trouble and down the stretch both Freshman Jabari Parker and sophomore Amile Jefferson fouled out of the game.

Syracuse plays Notre Dame at the Dome on Monday night, a game Boeheim described as one that ‘won’t be easy.’  Duke will get another shot at Syracuse in exactly three weeks when they host the Orange on their home court.

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