Syracuse vs Florida

Jackson's double-double helps No. 7 Syracuse stay unbeaten

CBSSports.com wire reports
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TAMPA, Fla. -- California, North Carolina and now Florida.

It doesn't matter which ranked team Syracuse plays, the seventh-ranked Orange seem to have all the answers during an impressive run to start the season.

"With all the problems you can have in the world, we don't have a lot right now," coach Jim Boeheim said Thursday night after Syracuse remained unbeaten with an 85-73 victory against No. 10 Florida in the SEC/Big East Invitational.

"We'll probably encounter some problems," Boeheim added. "But right now, we don't have a lot."

Rick Jackson scored a career-high 19 points and grabbed 11 rebounds, Andy Rautins had 18 points and Wes Johnson finished with 17 points and 10 rebounds for Syracuse (9-0) in its ninth double-digit victory.

  SEC/Big East Invitational

The Orange beat Cal by 22 points, defeated defending national champion North Carolina by 16 and pulled away in the closing minutes against a Florida team that looks like it is capable of making some noise in the Southeastern Conference this season.

Reserve Kris Joseph contributed 12 points and 10 rebounds against the previously unbeaten Gators (8-1).

"I think these early games like this, when you play really good teams, the things you don't do well in a particular game generally get really, really exposed," Florida coach Billy Donovan said. "Some things that I think came out to light, transition defense, rebounding."

Syracuse led most of the game, but the Gators stayed close by making 12 3-pointers in 30 attempts.

Kenny Boynton made five 3s and led the Gators with 20 points and seven assists. Chandler Parsons scored 19 and Erving Walker added 14.

"Just based on what I've seen with Syracuse, they are capable of winning a national championship," Donovan said.

"I haven't seen everybody play, but I would be hard pressed to say that there's three or four teams better than them. I think they have everything. They've got a low post presence. They rebound. They shoot the 3. They're an unselfish team. They can turn you over. They can beat you in a lot of different ways."

Neither team was ranked when the season began, but both quickly worked their way into the Top 10.

Syracuse thumped Cal and North Carolina in the Coaches vs. Cancer at Madison Square Garden to serve notice that the Orange might be better than anticipated. Florida raised eyebrows by knocking off Florida State and upsetting Michigan State on the way to only the third 8-0 start in school history.

Jackson had 16 points and, just as important, seven offensive rebounds in the first half. The 6-foot-9 junior only took one shot after halftime, finishing 8 of 12 while Johnson and Rautins asserted themselves offensively.

Johnson scored 13 second-half points and Rautins made a 3-pointer that helped the Orange pull away for good after Florida had wiped out a 10-point deficit.

"When we needed to make plays, when they came back at us, we made those big plays and got some space," Boeheim said. "But this is a tough team for us to play against."

The Orange twice built leads of 10 points, only have Florida battle back. The Gators made five 3-pointers in a 15-3 burst that turned a 54-44 deficit into a 59-57 lead. Walker made three in a row during the run, and Boynton and Parsons had one each.

The Orange regrouped, with Rautins and Johnson making 3-pointers to began a 16-4 surge that restored the double-digit lead at 73-63. Boynton hit another long 3 to try to spark another rally, but the closest the Gators would get down the stretch was 73-69 on two free throws by Parsons with 3:24 to go.

Syracuse closed the game on a 12-4 run. The 12-point margin of victory was the smallest for the Orange this season. The previous low was an 88-73 victory against Cornell.

"We knew we had a challenge in New York with Cal and North Carolina," Boeheim said. "We knew it would be a challenge coming down here. ... This was a tremendous win, given the way they've played."

Copyright 2015 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
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Wesley Johnson adds 17 points and 10 rebounds in Syracuse's victory over Florida.  (US Presswire)
Wesley Johnson adds 17 points and 10 rebounds in Syracuse's victory over Florida. (US Presswire)
Scoreboard
Syracuse #7 (9-0) «424385
Florida #10 (8-1)363773
SYR:Rick Jackson 21 Pts
SYR:Rick Jackson 11 Reb
SYR:Scoop Jardine 5 Ast
FL:Kenny Boynton 20 Pts
FL:Alex Tyus 10 Reb
FL:Kenny Boynton 7 Ast

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PLAYERS OF THE GAME
FloridaSyracuse
FL
Chandler Parsons
SYR
Wesley Johnson
PtsRebsAstPtsRebsAst
194517102
Syracuse Orange
W. Johnson, F397-122-5102217
A. Rautins, G396-132-455116
R. Jackson, F289-133-6111121
A. Onuaku, C222-60-02134
B. Triche, F221-54-60416
K. Joseph, F315-92-4100212
S. Jardine, G192-35-61529
G. Hoffman, UDid Not Play
M. Jones, FDid Not Play
B. Reese, GDid Not Play
N. Resavy, GDid Not Play
D. Riley, FDid Not Play
J. Southerland, FDid Not Play
M. Tomaszewski, FDid Not Play
M. Lyde-Cajuste, FDid Not Play
Totals 32-6118-3139181285
 52.5%58.1% 
Florida Gators
K. Boynton, G367-171-407320
E. Walker, G365-140-026314
A. Tyus, F284-110-010128
V. Macklin, F-C242-41-14045
D. Werner, F232-51-25245
C. Parsons, F356-94-645419
E. Murphy, F121-10-02002
R. Shipman, G-F60-10-01000
A. Allen, FDid Not Play
H. Fricke, GDid Not Play
K. Kadji, F-CDid Not Play
K. McClanahan, GDid Not Play
R. Tishman, GDid Not Play
Totals 27-627-1328211873
 43.5%53.8% 
Big East
TeamConf. W-LTot. W-LRPI Rank
Villanova16-233-32
Butler12-623-1131
Georgetown12-622-1125
Providence11-722-1222
St. Johns10-821-1244
Xavier9-923-1430
Seton Hall6-1216-1597
DePaul6-1212-20197
Creighton4-1414-19151
Marquette4-1413-19147

Southeastern
TeamConf. W-LTot. W-LRPI Rank
Kentucky18-038-11
Arkansas13-527-920
LSU11-722-1157
Georgia11-721-1238
Texas A&M11-721-1267
Ole Miss11-721-1360
Vanderbilt9-921-14104
Alabama8-1019-1585
Florida8-1016-1772
Tennessee7-1116-1696
S. Carolina6-1217-1691
Miss. State6-1213-19216
Auburn4-1415-20128
Missouri3-159-23218
 
Other games
OAK 57 Final
Mich St 88
UMOH 59 Final
Cincinnati 63