By BILLY HEYEN
Freshman guard Joe Girard III will make his first Syracuse start as the Orange’s point guard Saturday against Seattle, SU head coach Jim Boeheim told reporters Wednesday night. The announcement came after Girard played the most minutes at the point in Syracuse’s win over Colgate.
Jalen Carey has started Syracuse’s first two games of the season after backing up Frank Howard a season ago, but the Orange have struggled to get offense with Carey on the floor. Girard provided a spark off the bench against Virginia and again against Colgate, and Boeheim went with the freshman on the floor to start the second half Wednesday night. Girard finished with five points, four rebounds and three steals.
After Syracuse’s win Wednesday, Buddy Boeheim was asked about Girard on the ACC Network broadcast. Buddy said, in part, “”He pushes the tempo. He plays hard on defense… We have some good chemistry going.”
At one point in the second half Wednesday, Girard nailed a deep 3-pointer from the top of the key before throwing a lob for an alley-oop to Bourama Sidibe on the next possession. It forced a Colgate timeout, and the Orange weren’t threatened again.
Girard came to Syracuse from Glens Falls (New York) High School, just north of Albany. There, Girard became the all-time leading high-school scorer in New York state history, eventually eclipsing 4,000 points in his high school career. He often faced double- and triple-teams while in high school.
On the AAU circuit, Girard teamed with Buddy Boehim for The City Rocks, meaning that they’ll be reunited in the form of Syracuse’s starting backcourt Saturday night against Seattle.