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No. 9 Syracuse survives scare from St. Francis

Nov 19, 2013 - 4:01 AM Syracuse, NY ( - Michael Gbinije's layup off a Jerami Grant steal broke a tie with about a minute remaining and ninth-ranked Syracuse survived for a 56-50 win over upset-minded St. Francis (N.Y.).

Gbinije's bucket was part of the Orange's game-ending 10-0 run.

The Terriers, bidding for their first-ever win over a top-10 team, were shut out after a Wayne Martin free throw gave them a 50-46 lead with 4:10 left.

DaJuan Coleman made all five of his field goals and matched his career high with 14 points to lead Syracuse (4-0), which shot just 35.3 percent, including 26.3 percent (5-of-19) over the final 20 minutes. Grant had 13 points and eight rebounds.

"It's a very, very difficult game and I think it will help us," said Syracuse head coach Jim Boeheim. "I think we can learn some things from this to help us going forward. We certainly have got a lot of work to do and that's not a surprise."

This game was the Maui Invitational opener for the Orange, who will next play in Hawaii against Minnesota on Nov. 25.

Jalen Cannon scored 16 points with eight boards and Martin added 13 points for the Terriers (2-2).

Down four at the break, St. Francis began the second half on a 9-2 run to go up 35-32.

Syracuse didn't reclaim the lead until Gbinije's layup. Grant then sank two free throws off a St. Francis turnover. Ben Mockford missed a 3-pointer on the next Terriers possession, and C.J. Fair clinched the win at the foul line.

Fair, who shot a dismal 2-of-13, nailed a jumper to cap an early 10-0 Syracuse burst, and a Grant layup made it 22-14 with 6:27 left. The Orange led 30-26 at halftime.

Game Notes

Trevor Cooney had 12 points and three steals for Syracuse ... Fair had seven points, six rebounds and two blocks ... St. Francis shot 41.9 percent ... The Orange has won all four meetings with the Terriers.