CORAL GABLES, Fla. – Norchad Omier had 16 points and 16 rebounds as No. 17 Miami overcame a double-digit deficit to beat Syracuse 82-78.
Harlond Beverly also scored 16 points for the Hurricanes (15-3, 6-2 Atlantic Coast Conference), Nijel Pack finished with 15 points and Jordan Miller had 13.
Down 11 early in the second half, Miami rallied for a 71-70 lead on Beverly’s fast-break dunk with 3:48 remaining. The reserve guard made two free throws with 1:39 remaining that increased the Hurricanes’ lead to 78-73.
“We knew we had to go out in the second half and make stops,” Pack said. “The game will come down to whoever makes it down the stretch.”
Joseph Girard III’s 3-pointer with 1:25 remaining cut it to 78-76.
Orange (12-7, 5-3) had possession with 25 seconds remaining, but Omier forced a turnover on rookie guard Judah Mintz with 10 seconds remaining. Omier was fouled and made two free throws.
Beverly’s two free throws with three seconds left clinched the win as Miami improved to 12-0 at home.
“It’s good to go undefeated at home,” Beverly said. “It always feels good to get a win here. You can’t keep losing.”
Beverly made all eight of her free throws and shot 4-for-7 from the field. His minutes proved valuable after Miami’s leading scorer Isaiah Wong was limited by foul trouble.
“In the month of January, he’s been a lot more productive and the players on the team really enjoy when he comes into the game,” Hurricanes coach Jim Larranaga said of Beverly. “He’s going to give us a great effort on both ends.”
The Hurricanes made 25 of 28 free throws.
Pack also played a key role in Miami’s comeback with three second-half 3-pointers, including a 35-foot conversion that cut Syracuse’s lead to 64-63 with 5:56 to play.
“This is something we worked on in the last two games, knowing that they were going to play in the zone, especially up high,” Pack said. “So I just practiced taking deeper photos. When I got the chance in the game, I was ready for it.”
Jesse Edwards scored a career-high 25 points and grabbed 11 rebounds, while Girard finished with 21 for the Orange.
“Joe and Jesse were really good and did everything they could to try to win the game,” Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim said.
The orange scored nine unanswered points and took its first lead late in the first half. Girard’s three-point play with 4:40 remaining capped the surge and put Syracuse ahead 29-24.
Edwards’ layup with three seconds left gave the Orange a 38-34 halftime lead.
Miami opened with an 11-2 run before Wong committed two fouls within five seconds of each other. Wong sat out after his second foul at 4:08 into the game and played an additional five minutes the remainder of the half. He finished with nine points.
IMPLICATIONS OF THE SURVEY
The Hurricanes were among 11 Top 25 teams to lose on Saturday. Five teams ranked behind the Hurricanes also lost, resulting in a drop of just one place from the previous poll. Miami entered the standings at 25th on December 12, peaked at 12th before falling to its current spot.
Syracuse: Edwards had his ninth double-double of the season. Girard shook off a seven-point outing against Notre Dame on Saturday. Girard had scored in double figures in his previous 10 games.
Miami: The home game against Syracuse interrupted an inclined road sequence for the Hurricanes. They began their road stretch on Saturday at North Carolina State and will also play their next three games on the road.
“These three straight away games will really test us to see how tough and how much we can fight against adversity,” Pack said.
UNTIL NEXT TIME
Syracuse visits Georgia Tech on Saturday.
Miami visits Duke on Saturday.
Omier’s double-double leads No. 17 Miami over Syracuse 82-78 originally appeared on NBCSports.com