Louisville and Syracuse squared off in the last real Big East Tournament championship Saturday night in Madison Square Garden.
Louisville went on a 44-10 run to set a new record for the largest halftime deficit ever overcome in the title game.
ROUGH FIRST HALF
Louisville trailed by 35-22 at halftime and looked bad doing it. The Cardinals hit just 26 percent of their shots in the first half.
Syracuse pushed its lead to 16 early in the second half before Orange star James Southerland picked up his fourth foul with just over 15 minutes left in the second half.
Louisville cut the margin to 37-27 with just under 18 minutes left, but Syracuse quickly responded with a run of its own, pushing the lead to 45-29.
Louisville went on a 10-0 run to cut the margin to six points by the 13 minute mark. A pair of free throws by Montrezl Harrel cut the Orange lead to 47-43 with 11:25 left. After a jumper by Gorgui Dieng, Siva hit two free throws to cut the Syracuse lead to one, 48-47.
A dunk by Harrell with 9:28 left gave Louisville the lead for the first time in the game. After a steal by Hancock, the junior forward was fouled on a three point attempt and he hit two of three from the line to increase Louisville's lead to 51-48.
With 9:09 left Hancock placed a pair of hands on Michael Carter-Williams and Carter-Williams swung an elbow at him to create space.
Hancock was awarded two shots and the UofL got the ball. It turned out to be a five point swing as Kevin Ware hit a three from the wing to put Louisville up 56-48.
Peyton Siva came into the game having missed 17 of 18 shots against Syracuse this season. After missing four of his first five shots, he hit a foul line jumper to improve to 2 for 6.
He finished 3 for 9 for 11 points with eight assists and two rebounds. Siva was named Big East Tournament Most Outstanding Player for the second year in a row. He became the first the first back-to-back Big East MOP since Patrick Ewing of Georgetown.
MONTREZL'S BIG GAME
With a career-high 20 points and seven rebounds, Montrezl Harrell was named Player of the Game. Harrell did it all for the Cardinals during the second half run.
Harrell hit 7 of 12 shots and 6 of 9 free throws. He hit a pair of foul line jumpers, busting Syracuse's zone on two possessions.