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Beat writers predict Syracuse basketball to squeak past Florida State

first_img Related Stories Dwayne Bacon stars for Florida State after bumpy roadSyracuse basketball opponent preview: What to know about Florida StateOn the beat: Syracuse rides hot streak in conference play, Florida State previewJim Boeheim and Leonard Hamilton discuss Syracuse-Florida State matchup on ACC coaches teleconference Facebook Twitter Google+ Syracuse (16-8, 6-5 Atlantic Coast) hosts Florida State (16-7, 6-5) on Thursday at 7 p.m. The Orange is riding a three-game win streak and has won six of its last seven while the Seminoles are on a four-game win streak. The two teams are tied for eighth place in the ACC, making Thursday night’s game meaningful.Here’s how our beat writers predict the game will unfold.Sam Blum (16-8)Syracuse 59, Florida State 57Home SkilletThe Orange bulldozed through three games in five days, a stretch that had head coach Jim Boeheim pleased to just have a couple days off. Now, more than a week later, this refreshed SU team won’t miss a beat against Florida State and its prolific scorer Xavier Rathan-Mayes. This will be a defensive battle, but Syracuse has the rested legs and a proven home-court advantage. This game won’t be in hand until the final possession, but the Orange has proven winning games late is something it’s capable of doing and Syracuse’s conference resurgence continues.Jesse Dougherty (16-8)Syracuse 69, Florida State 62Bacon, egg and 3s AdvertisementThis is placeholder textDwayne Bacon, Malik Beasley and Rathan-Mayes, individually and separately, spell big trouble for the Syracuse zone. But it’s the Orange playmakers that get hot after a nine-day layover and carry SU to its seventh victory in eight games. In a game filled with young talent — Bacon and Beasley are considered two of the top freshman in the ACC and country — it’s Syracuse rookie Malachi Richardson who shines the brightest. And once he puts the Orange in position to win, the Seminoles shot-happy offense starts clanking contested looks and SU rides its experience to the finish.Matt Schneidman (16-8)Syracuse 72, Florida State 66ChoppedFlorida State boasts the fourth-highest-scoring offense in the ACC, led by a dynamic freshman duo of Beasley and Bacon. But nobody has been playing as well on defense as Syracuse and the Orange finds a way to slow down the Seminoles and hold them 13 points below their season average. Michael Gbinije and Trevor Cooney, once again, guide Syracuse on the defensive end while scoring a combined 30 on the offensive side. Commentscenter_img Published on February 11, 2016 at 1:05 pmlast_img

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