The struggles of the Big East thus far in the NCAA tournament has not affected the Orangemen of Syracuse. Syracuse defeated Gonzaga in Buffalo, New York today 87-65. With Onuaku missing the game due to a quad injury, Gonzaga looked to the inside game early. They were quite successful early and Rick Jackson found himself on the bench midway through the 1st half with 3 fouls. Wesley Johnson and Andy Rautins didn’t need an inside game today as the two combined for 55 points and collectively shot 9-15 from behind the 3-point line.

Syracuse took control of this game early and never let up. They shot 54.7% from the field and an astounding 48% from 3-point land. If the play of the Orange was this high without Onuaku, it could be scary for the remaining 15 teams come next Thursday and Friday. With Kansas falling to Northern Iowa last night, Syracuse was not about to let Gonzaga follow their lead and eliminate another top team.

If the play of the Orange continues at this level, it’s going to be awfully hard for anyone to get past them. While the Big East is struggling in this years tournament, the Orange are showing why they deserved a #1 seed. Look for Syracuse to continue their excellent play next week against Butler.

photo credit: New York Times