Syracuse over Georgetown in OT thriller
by Eric Prisbell, USA TODAY Sports
NEW YORK — Whether it was the closing of Manley Field House more than three decades ago or this year’s two final regular-season meetings as Big East rivals, these momentous final chapters against Georgetown have never gone well for Jim Boeheim.
But he led his Syracuse team into the semifinals of its final Big East tournament here with renewed hope, one final chance under the spotlight against the Hoyas before the Orange departs for the Atlantic Coast Conference and Georgetown becomes a member of the new Big East. And this time, it would be Boeheim who would officially close this Big East rivalry with a victory, 58-55 in overtime.
In the 14th meeting between the bitter rivals in the iconic Big East tournament, they were tied with 1 minute 47 seconds to play in regulation, with most of Madison Square Garden crowd on its feet applauding and some fans pumping their fists. Both teams are safely in the NCAA tournament field as high seeds, but the ear-splitting noise throughout the arena made clear that this was about something far more long lasting than seeding or postseason hopes.
With Syracuse up two points, the crowd remained standing and roaring throughout a timeout in the final minute of regulation. They watched Georgetown stop Syracuse, grab possession of the ball and secure a chance to tie the game with 20 seconds remaining.
With 7.3 seconds left, Otto Porter was fouled by C.J. Fair near the corner. Porter, the Big East’s player of the year, calmly made both free throws, tying the game at 51. Syracuse’s Michael Carter-Williams’ outside shot was not close, giving fans of both teams an extra five minutes of what has been one of the sport’s signature rivalries.
The Orange was the aggressor early in overtime, taking a four-point advantage and fouling out Georgetown guard Markel Starks. Georgetown had a final chance to potentially tie the game with a three-pointer, trailing 58-55 with 14.4 seconds to play, but Syracuse trapped Porter near the corner and the All-American threw the ball away to Syracuse.
For Syracuse, and especially for Boeheim, it was a satisfying final triumph … [For more on Syracuse outlasts Georgetown in OT thriller to advance in Big East tourney, click here.]