Friday, December 17, 2010

Orangemen to Host Iona Saturday Night

Saturday at 7:00PM in the Carrier Dome the Iona Gaels of the MAAC Conference will take on the #5 Syracuse Orangemen. Iona comes to the Dome sporting a 7-3 record. They opened their season with three straight losses, however answered that streak with a seven game winning streak.

Syracuse (10-0) is coming off a 57 point drubbing of the Colgate Raiders last Saturday night. Rick Jackson lead the way that night, scoring 18 points and grabbing 10 rebounds for his eighth double-double in ten games.

Sophomore Brandon Triche had his best shooting night of the season and his biggest offensive output since the 2nd game of the season against Canisius. Triche finished with 14 points on 5 of 7 shooting from the floor. He was 3 of 5 from beyond the arc, and if he can continue to knock down his shots it will really open up the floor for Syracuse's big men underneath.

Speaking of the big men, there was an injury update on freshman center Fab Melo this week. Fab Melo, thought to be nursing an Achilles tendon injury, discovered that he has a calf muscle tear in his right leg, and will be resting it leading up to the game against Iona Saturday.

After resting for a few days, Fab Melo participated in some light shooting and running on Thursday. Jim Boeheim said that if that went well, he would practice Friday. Assuming things went well and Fab Melo feels fine, he'll suit up for the Orangemen on Saturday night. If he feels discomfort, he won't. As news on Fab Melo's injury becomes available, we will post it here at The Cuse Connection.

Prior to the game against Colgate we discussed how important it was for Mookie Jones and James Southerland to play well when called upon these next four games, starting with then 0-7 Colgate. James Southerland found 22 minutes on the floor, and was 3 of 6 from the field to go along with 9 rebounds, 2 assists 3 steals and 3 blocks with zero turnovers, and finished with 7 points. It was the kind of game Southerland needed to show Jim Boeheim. He had to show that he could do more than just throw up long range jumpers, and I feel as though he did just that. We will need more of the same from Southerland these next three games if he wants to play more than just garbage minutes once the Conference schedule begins.

Mookie Jones played 17 minutes and was 3 of 6 from 3-point range (3 of 8 overall). He had 1 rebound, 2 assists 1 block and 1 turnover and finished with 9 points. Although he shot 50% from beyond the arc, he did not impress as much as Southerland and will need to do better in the three remaining non-conference games.

The Iona Gaels are lead by Michael Glover (6'7" 215 pounds) a forward from the Bronx. He is currently averaging 22.1 points and 9.6 rebounds per game for the Gaels. Against Canisius on December 3rd Glover dropped 39 points and grabbed 14 rebounds. Guard Scott Machado (6'1" 180 pounds) out of Queens, NY averages 13.7 points and 8 assists per game. He had a season high 28 points against Richmond on November 18th and a season high 15 assists against Albany on November 23rd. Machado averages 4 turnovers per game as well.

Iona also gets offensive production out of Kyle Smyth and Jermel Jenkins. Kyle Smith (6'4" 185 pounds) a guard out of River Edge, NJ averages 12.8 points per game and shots 45.9% from 3-point range. Against Albany Smith shot 8 of 13 from beyond the arc en route to a 29 point game. Jermel Jenkins (5'11" 185 pounds) averages 12.1 points per game and shoots 40.3% from long distance. His best shooting performance was also against Albany, when he shot 7 of 11 from 3-point range and finished with 21 points. Jenkins also averages 3.8 assists and 3 rebounds per game.

Tip-off is scheduled for 7:00PM on Saturday night and the game will be broadcast live on SNY, the Big East Network. If Fab Melo is unable to go on Saturday, than expect Baye Moussa Keita to get his first start of the season. Syracuse will have no true center to backup Keita, thus Rick Jackson will probably have to log some minutes in the middle.

Check in with The Cuse Connection after the game for full recap and analysis.

photo courtesy of


Anonymous said...

Smyth not smith

Michael Isserlis said...

ah, right you are