SYRACUSE, N.Y. (AP) — Kris Joseph scored six of his 21 points in overtime, and No. 17 Syracuse held off Rutgers 84-80 on Saturday.
The game was tied at 70 after regulation, and Joseph gave the Orange (22-6, 9-6 Big East) a 75-71 lead when he curled off a screen at the top of the key and swished a 3 off a feed from Brandon Triche.
Jonathan Mitchell responded 16 seconds later with a 3 from the right wing for Rutgers, and after Scoop Jardine’s baseline drive and floater made it 77-75 with 2:07 left, the Scarlet Knights missed three straight shots.
Syracuse sank 7 of 10 free throws in the final 63 seconds to hold on.
Rick Jackson, who finished with 18 points, 12 rebounds and matched his career high with seven blocks, tied the game at 70 when he converted one of two free throws with 9.9 seconds left and James Beatty missed a long 3 at the buzzer for Rutgers as the game headed for overtime.
Rutgers (13-13, 4-10) has lost five of six and fell to 1-22 all-time in games played at Syracuse, including 15 straight losses. The lone victory was 76-75 on Feb. 6, 1975 — the season before Jim Boeheim became head coach of the Orange.
C.J. Fair finished with a career-high 17 points and pulled down eight rebounds and Triche had 17 points as Syracuse recovered from a subpar first half defensively.
Mike Coburn led Rutgers with 18 points, Mitchell finished with 13, and Gilvydas Biruta had 12 points and eight rebounds before fouling out in the extra period.
The Scarlet Knights shot 54.5 percent from the floor in the first half and were 5 of 9 from beyond the arc, taking a 44-43 lead into the break on Coburn’s off-balance 3 at the buzzer.
But the Orange turned up the defense in the second half, limiting Rutgers to 10 of 26 (38.5 percent) shooting and 2 of 9 (22.2 percent) from beyond the arc.
The Scarlet Knights were called for 30 fouls to 18 against Syracuse, and the Orange outscored Rutgers 34-9 from the line.
Rutgers hung tough, converting 14 Syracuse turnovers into 22 points, and the game was up for grabs after Syracuse missed its first seven shots of the second half. But Rutgers failed to take advantage and the Orange tied the game at 51 on Fair’s three-point play with 13:54 left.
That started a 14-4 Syracuse spurt as Joseph came alive after a lackluster first half. He converted a dunk off a baseline drive and then hit a 3 from the top of the key to give the Orange a 62-55 lead. It was Syracuse’s lone 3 of the half in seven attempts.
But after Jackson picked up his fourth foul with 7:02 left, the Scarlet Knights rallied as the Orange committed two turnovers and missed three shots.
Austin Johnson’s shot in the lane over freshman center Baye Moussa Keita made it a one-point game and Mike Poole swished a long 3 from the right wing to give Rutgers a 66-64 lead with 3:10 left.
Fair tied it at 1:40 on a floater in the lane off a nice feed from Jackson, and Jackson gave the Orange the lead by converting one of two free throws with 39.8 seconds left after he was fouled by Mitchell in a scuffle under the basket.