The SU men's basketball team had a 16 point lead over Louisville in the second half of the Big East Tournament Championship, but behind Tournament MVP Peyton Siva's 11 points and eight assists, Louisville won their second Big East Tournament Championship in a row, defeating Syracuse 78-61.
In the first half, SU senior James Southerland made his 17th three of the 2013 Big East Tournament, breaking the tournament record, and helping Syracuse to a 35-22 halftime advantage.
But, Southerland's fourth foul came with more than 15 minutes left in the second half, putting him on the bench, and shifting the momentum towards the Cardinals. Louisville went on a 27 to 3 run after Southerland was forced to sit on the bench, powering the Cardinals to a 49-58 lead. Louisville actually won the second half by 30, 56-26.
While Louisville forward Montrezl Harrell made momentum-boosting dunks en route to 20 points, part of the Orange's collapse came by their ball security. The Orange had 19 turnovers on the day, as opposed to Louisville's 10. At the same time, SU tallied 11 assists compared to Louisville's 20.
SU junior C.J. Fair snapped out of his tournament slump, making an uncharacteristic four threes, scoring a team-high 21 points. Teammate Michael Carter-Williams was often the guard passing to him, tallying nine assists.
Experts say the Orange will be a 3 or 4 seed in the NCAA Tournament, but Syracuse will wait to hear their NCAA Tournament fate until tomorrow during the Selection Show at 6:00 p.m.