Vanessa Williams watches a game between Dayton and Syracuse during the NCAA men's college basketball tournament in Buffalo, N.Y., Saturday, March 22, 2014. (AP Photo/Bill Wippert)
Syracuse Falls to Dayton in Upset Loss
Buffalo, N.Y. (WBEN) - When the Syracuse University Orange fell to Dayton in an upset loss at First Niagara Center Saturday night, actress, model and former Miss America Vanessa Williams was there to see it all.
Williams is an alumni of SU and tweeted out Saturday night "Go 'Cuse!! In 1st Niagara Arena. Make it happen #ProudAlum". Well SU didn't make it happen for Williams or anyone else.
The (11) Dayton Flyers will continue their Cinderella run in the 2014 NCAA Tournament after upsetting the (3) Syracuse Orange 55-53, in front of a sold out First Niagara Center crowd on Saturday night.
The Flyers controlled the pace and play for most of the opening half. The 11-seed’s largest lead of the first was 7 points, when Syracuse struggled to hit a field goal. The Orange went more than six minutes without a made basket through the middle of the first half. The 3-seed went 0-5 from behind the three-point line in the first, including a 0-3 performance by Trevor Cooney. The guard had just 2 points in the half.
Both Dyshawn Pierre and Vee Sanford scored 6 points in the first to lead the Flyers. Dayton also outrebounded Syracuse 19-16 in the half, while the two teams each had 5 rebounds on the offensive end. C.J. Fair led the Orange in scoring with 6 points, thanks in part to 4-6 shooting from the foul line. Syracuse shot just 7-23 (30.4%) from the field in the opening half, while Dayton was one better, 8-23 (34.8%).
The two teams picked up the pace in the second half. Dayton pushed their lead to 6 points, 32-26, but a 10-3 run by the Orange gave the team its second lead of the game. The scoring run ended when the two teams were tied 40-40, midway through the half. The Flyers regrouped and never looked back thanks to a pair of clutch three-point baskets.
Syracuse was 0-10 from behind the three-point line, while the Flyers went 7-16, including 6-11 in the second half. Tyler Ennis had a chance to win the game with a three-pointer at the buzzer, but it did not go in. The freshman guard led all scorers with 19 points in the game. Pierre led the Flyers with 14, while Jordan Sibert added 10 points.
The Flyers advance to the Sweet 16 in the Midwest Region, and await the winner of (2) Kansas and (10) Stanford next Thursday in Memphis, TN.