RALEIGH, N.C. — Alan Griffin scored 22 points and the Syracuse University men’s basketball team ended a four-game road losing streak with a 77-68 victory over North Carolina State on Tuesday night at the PNC Arena.
The Orange (11-6 overall, 5-5 Atlantic Coast Conference) won for the fourth time in their last six games and rebounded nicely from Saturday’s 78-61 loss at Clemson. Syracuse held the lead for the final 14:08 and withstood a late run by NC State (8-8, 4-7) by ending the game on a 10-4 spurt.
Syracuse is next scheduled to host Boston College at 2 p.m. Saturday in the Carrier Dome to be televised on the ACC Network.
“We just battled them in there, this was easily our best road win, if not the best win we’ve had all year,” SU coach Jim Boeheim said afterward. “I think we learned a lot tonight about ourselves, and this was a really special win.”
Griffin made 9 of 17 shots and sank four 3-pointers. He posted his sixth 20-point game of the season three days after shooting 2 of 13 from the floor in the Clemson loss.
Buddy Boeheim added 16 points and his 3-pointer gave the Orange the lead for good at 48-45. Quincy Guerrier contributed 14 and seven rebounds as Syracuse shot 46.7 percent after shooting 30 percent in the Clemson loss.
Syracuse finished with a 32-28 edge in rebounds and a 28-20 advantage on points in the paint to bounce back from four straight ACC road losses by an average margin of 16.5 points.
Thomas Allen scored 17 points while D.J. Funderburk added 14 Jericole Hellems finished with 11 for the Wolfpack, who shot 44.4 percent but also committed a season-high 20 turnovers against a swarming SU defense utilizing traps to force mistakes.
“That’s eight extra possessions right there,” Jim Boeheim said. “That’s a big part of winning the game because they shot well, they got to the foul line, the turnovers were a big part of the game.”
Syracuse held a 34-25 lead on a 3-pointer by Griffin with 1:44 left and settled for a 34-33 halftime advantage after North Carolina State scored eight points in the final 61 seconds.
Syracuse went on a 14-6 run in the second half and held a 59-51 lead on a layup by Guerrier with 10:54 left. The Orange took their first double-digit lead when Griffin’s 3-pointer made it 65-55 with 8:22 to go but the Wolfpack got within 67-64 on a jumper by Hellems with 4:46 remaining.
Syracuse secured the win on a layup by Guerrier with 3:10 left that made it 73-64 and the Orange held North Carolina State without a basket for the final 4:46.
“This league it tough, these teams are good, and I’m glad we could come down and get this win,” Jim Boeheim said. “These guys just would not be denied, and they hit some really big shots to take control of the game.”
Freshman Kadary Richmond contributed eight points and three steals off the bench despite being listed as questionable due to an impacted tooth. Boeheim said afterward that Richmond missed the previous practice and is scheduled to have the tooth removed this morning.
“In practice it was funny because coach (Boeheim) would be like: ‘Your teeth hurt but your legs work,’” Griffin said. “He has a little ache but he didn’t let that stop him from competing and doing what he does.”
Syracuse was without center Bourama Sidibe due to knee soreness. He returned to play 11 minutes against Clemson last Saturday for the first time since the suffering a torn meniscus in the Nov. 27 season opener.