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Cal Routs No. 23 Syracuse, Earns Spot in 2K Classic Final

Cal Routs No. 23 Syracuse, Earns Spot in 2K Classic Final

Thomas Northcut/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- The California Golden Bears opened up a 12-point halftime lead, maintaining the advantage all the way until the final buzzer for a 73-59 upset win over 23rd-raked Syracuse on Thursday night.

With the victory, Cal (3-0) moves on to the finals of the annual 2K Classic against Texas on Friday at Madison Square Garden.

"We lost to them the past two years, and with guys that were returning it plays on your mind," said first-year head coach Cuonzo Martin. "But I thought our guys did a great job of accepting the challenge."

The Bears hit four consecutive three pointers late in the first half, holding a 34-22 advantage at the break. Jordan Matthews helped keep the game in control by scoring 20 of his 22 points in the second half. Meanwhile, the defense was strong against Rakeem Christmas, the leading scorer for Syracuse (2-1), holding him to just eight points before the big man fouled out. 

It was a sigh of relief when the final buzzer sounded for those associated with Cal. In each of the last two seasons, the Orange (2-1) have found ways to beat the Bears. The first came in the 2013 NCAA Elite Eight while the second was part of the Maui invitational during the 2013-14 campaign.

Both Kaleb Joseph and Michael Gbinije scored 13 points to pace Syracuse while Matthews poured in a game-high 22.

Cal will take on No. 10 Texas, who beat Iowa 71-57, in the championship game on Friday night.

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(11) Dayton Reaches Sweet 16 with Win Over (3) Syracuse

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Scoreboard Roundup – 2/24/14

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No. 5 Duke Outlasts Top-Ranked Syracuse 66-60

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Boston College Stuns No. 1 Syracuse 62-59 in OT

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Scoreboard Roundup – 1/25/14

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(2) Syracuse Holds UNC to Lowest Point Total Since 1997 in Win

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Syracuse Drops Miami (FL) 49-44 in ACC Opener

Syracuse Drops Miami (FL) 49-44 in ACC OpenerNate Shron/Getty Images(SYRACUSE, N.Y) --  C.J. Fair poured in 15 points as No. 2 Syracuse rallied to defeat Miami 49-44 on Saturday in the program's ACC opener. The Orange (14-0, 1-0 ACC) entered the game as one of seven remaining unbeaten teams ...
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