Cooney Powers No. 1 Orange Over Fighting Irish
On a night where the rest of his teammates struggled to find anything offensively, Trevor Cooney scored a career-high 33 points to lead his Syracuse Orange over the Notre Dame Fighting Irish 61-55 on Monday night.
It was the first match-up of the two teams since both becoming members of the ACC this season. It was also the first game for the Orange as the No. 1 team in Division I basketball.
The Orange dominated the first half, shutting down the Irish, only allowing them to score a season-low 18 points. However, in the second half, while the Orange continued to defend well, struggled to put points on the board and Notre Dame was able to climb back into the game, even taking the lead a handful of times.
However, it was Cooney, with a school record tying nine 3-pointers, that allowed the Orange to hang on for its 22nd win of the season.
"Our offense was just not good," said Orange head coach Jim Boehiem. "It was one of those games where we were not sharp at all. It was a completely different game. There were driving opportunities. You can drive against Duke but you can’t drive against this team. We were still trying to drive in there and it just wasn’t there. You’ve got to make some shots against them and we were not shooting the ball well, with one exception."
The last time the Orange played the Fighting Irish as the No. 1 team, Notre Dame knocked them off in a 67-58 upset during the 2011-12 season.
The undefeated and top ranked Orange not get almost a full week to prepare for a Sunday tilt against Clemson.