Syracuse’s defense overpowers Oakland 74-50
SYRACUSE, N.Y. (AP) — Tyus Battle scored 25 points, Frank Howard and Paschal Chukwu scored career highs in points with 18 and 12, respectively, and Syracuse defeated Oakland 74-50 on Monday.
Chukwu added 11 rebounds and eight blocks and Syracuse (4-0) scored 23 points off of 19 Oakland turnovers and held the Golden Grizzlies (2-2) to 31 percent shooting from the field, including 6 of 22 from beyond the arc.
Oshae Brissett had 11 points and nine rebounds and Marek Dolezaj had eight boards for the Orange.
Martez Walker scored 14 for Oakland while Kendrick Nunn, the Golden Grizzlies’ leading scorer at 28 points a game, was held to 12 points.
Syracuse led 51-41 with 9:24 to play and closed on a 23-9 run for the winning margin. Howard had 11 points in the run.
Syracuse went on a 16-2 run to take an 18-9 lead in the first half. The Golden Grizzlies scored the next five, but Syracuse, fueled by Battle’s nine straight points, took a 29-18 lead. Battle scored 15 of his 16 first half points in 12 minutes. Oshae Brissett had 10 points and five rebounds and the Orange took a 39-25 at the break. Syracuse hit 53 percent from the field.
Kendrick Nunn, Oakland’s leading scorer, scored just three points in the first half on 1-of-9 shooting, Including 1 of 7 from beyond the arc.
Syracuse’s hounding defense forced 13 turnovers in the first half. The Orange took advantage, scoring 14 points on the Grizzlies’ miscues.
Oakland: Things should get better for the Golden Grizzlies with the return of Jalen Hayes, who sat out the final game of his four-game suspension.
Syracuse: Syracuse received big lifts from Chukwu and Dolezaj. The Orange could surprise this year if those two continue to progress, along with freshman Brissett.
Oakland doesn’t have much to be thankful for with its next game on the schedule - Friday at No. 3 Kansas.
Syracuse’s six-game season-opening home stand continues Wednesday against Toledo.