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Syracuse men’s basketball aims to get back in the win column at Georgia Tech

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Cuse.com
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Joe Girard pulls up for a jumper in SU’s 82-78 loss at Miami on Monday.

The Orange began their week down in Coral Gables, Florida, flew back up to the 315 for a week of practice, and will make the trip back south for a clash with Georgia Tech on Saturday.

On Monday SU fell at 17th-ranked Miami 82-78. The ‘Cuse built an 11-point lead but collapsed down the stretch.

Syracuse freshman point guard Judah Mintz committed five turnovers and mustered just three points in the contest. Some of those turnovers were live-ball miscues which led to fast break points for the Hurricanes. Miami scored 18 points on the fast break. SU had zero second-half points in transition.

The loss brought the Orange’s record against AP Top 25 opponents to 0-3 on the season.

“It’s not hyperbole to say that a loss like this is the difference between making and missing the NCAA Tournament,” Syracuse.com’s Brent Axe said after the game.

But there were some silver linings in the loss: Seniors Jesse Edwards and Joe Girard combined for 46 points. The Dutchman’s 25 points marked a career-high.

“Joe and Jesse really were good. I mean they did everything they could do to try to win this game,” Head Coach Jim Boeheim said in the postgame press conference.

Syracuse wings Benny Williams and Justin Taylor combined for 20 points on 4-for-6 shooting from beyond the arc. However, the rest of the team shot just 2-for-14 from three-point range.

The Orange now shift their focus to a Yellow Jackets squad which has struggled this season. Georgia Tech (8-10 overall, 1-7 in ACC) has lost four straight games and ranks 142nd in KenPom.

Tech is led by sophomore guard Miles Kelly. The Georgia native averages 13.2 points per game and shoots over 38 percent from distance.

6-foot-1 inch guard Deivon Smith leads the squad in rebounding. The junior enters the matchup as the only Yellow Jacket that has eclipsed 100 boards on the season.

As a team, Georgia Tech ranks 214th in steals per game, 226th in total rebound rate, and 250th in three-point percentage.

Syracuse narrowly avoided an upset against Tech at the Dome last season, squeaking out a 74-73 win in overtime.

The two programs each have six victories against one another entering Saturday’s tilt. SU has lost three of its last four contests at Georgia Tech dating back to 2017.

Joe Girard has scored exactly 10 points in each of his two previous games at Tech. Jesse Edwards has scored exactly 7 points in both of his previous outings at McCamish Pavilion.

A win for the ‘Cuse would boost them to 6-3 in the ACC. Five teams in the conference already have at least six wins in league play entering Saturday’s slate, with the winner of NC State-UNC also earning its sixth conference victory.

WAER’s coverage between SU and GT starts at 11:30 a.m. with McClurg Team Countdown to Tipoff for the noon game.