Boeheim’s ejection helps Duke hold off Syracuse

Alan Draper profile picture
Sports Editor
We sometimes use affiliate links in our content, when clicking on those we might receive a commission – at no extra cost to you. By using this website you agree to our terms and conditions and privacy policy.

DURHAM, N.C. — Duke had enough energy to respond from a difficult defeat, while top-ranked Syracuse simply boiled over by the end Saturday night.

Forward Jabari Parker scored 19 points and No. 5 Duke held on to beat Syracuse 66-60 after a potential tying basket was waved off with 10.4 seconds remaining at Cameron Indoor Stadium.

With Syracuse trailing 60-58, Orange coach Jim Boeheim was ejected when he was called for two technical fouls after official Tony Greene ruled that Syracuse forward C.J. Fair’s drive for a basket did not count because of an offensive foul.

Duke guard Quinn Cook converted three free throws on the technical fouls.

Boeheim was composed moments later, saying the rules stipulate that when there’s a path to the basket and the offensive player is in a shooting motion the call should be a block.

The veteran coach, who rushed onto the court in drawing the technical, even joked in postgame comments that his maneuver proved he could still move.

“I wanted to see if I had it in me,” he said. “I did. I got out there quick.”

Boeheim is second in NCAA Division I men’s coaching victories behind only Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski. They’re friends and coach together for the U.S. Olympic team.

“You obviously don’t want the game to end that way,” Krzyzewski said. “But I applaud him. We’re both old and we still care.”

Duke forward Rodney Hood took the charge on Fair.

“Rodney made an unbelievable play on the charge,” Krzyzewski said. “The fact that he had the courage to do that is unbelievable.”

Hood was involved in a late-game controversy when the teams met three weeks earlier at the Carrier Dome: No foul was called on his dunk attempt in overtime.

“The basketball gods, they’re the best,” Krzyzewski said.

“I’m starting to enjoy it,” Hood said of the strange attention associated with Syracuse games.

Hood added 13 points for Duke, which holds a 31-game home-court winning streak. The Blue Devils, who were coming off Thursday night’s loss at North Carolina, have not suffered consecutive defeats since March 2012.

Forward Jerami Grant’s 17 points and Fair’s 12 points led Syracuse, whose school-record 25-game winning streak ended three nights earlier against Boston College.

The Orange (25-2, 12-2 Atlantic Coast Conference) dropped 1 1/2 games behind first-place Virginia in the ACC. Duke (22-6, 11-4) kept alive its slim hopes to win the regular-season conference title.

Boeheim said his team gave a good enough effort.

“We fought as hard as we have all year,” Boeheim said. “That’s an outstanding offensive team (with Duke) and our defense was as good as we’ve (been) all year.”

Duke and Syracuse split two down-to-the-wire matchups during their first season in the same conference.

“Both teams were worthy of winning this game,” Krzyzewski said. “Both teams were worthy of winning up there (at Syracuse). Going 1-1 is probably how it should be.”

The lead went back and forth for the first 10 minutes of the second half before Duke grabbed a 51-45 advantage with less than eight minutes to play.

Even though the Blue Devils were in their fourth game in eight nights, they didn’t wilt.

“We were able to keep on going,” Parker said.

Krzyzewski said, “It’s tough for people to understand when you play four games in eight days, especially with two on the road at 9 o’clock.”

Parker’s putback dunk with 4:25 left helped the Blue Devils to a 55-49 edge.

The Orange were within 57-56 on two free throws by guard Trevor Cooney with two minutes remaining.

Parker bulled in for a basket at the other end. He rebounded Cooney’s miss, but then Parker failed to convert on the front end of a 1-and-1.

Syracuse forward Rakeem Christmas dunked to make it 59-58 before Duke guard Rasheed Sulaimon’s one free throw at the 24.9-second mark.

Syracuse guard Tyler Ennis was held to nine points, making 2 of 13 shots from the field.

The score was tied 26-26 at halftime, although Duke never led in the opening 20 minutes.

Syracuse built a nine-point lead, aided by free throws from guard Tyler Ennis when

Alan is an expert gambling writer who works as one of the chief editors for Basketball Insiders. He has been covering online gambling and sports betting for over 8 years, having written for the likes of Sportlens,, The Sports Daily, 90min, and His particular specialisms include US online casinos and gambling regulations, and soccer and basketball betting. Based in London, Alan holds an MA in English Literature and is a passionate supporter of Chelsea FC.

Trending Now