NEWARK, N.J. – Kris Joseph scored 17 points and Brandon Triche had all 15 of his in the second half to lead No. 4 Syracuse to a 61-56 victory over Seton Hall on Saturday in a game in which both teams struggled offensively.
Scoop Jardine added 12 points and Rick Jackson had nine points and 14 rebounds for the Orange (16-0, 3-0 Big East), who entered the game as one of the last seven unbeaten teams in Division I.
The Orange's last 16-0 start was in 1999-2000, when they won their first 19 games of the season.
Jeff Robinson had 17 points and 14 rebounds and Herb Pope had 14 points and 20 rebounds for Seton Hall (7-9, 1-3), which has lost three straight and six of seven.
The Pirates entered the game as the worst shooting team in the Big East (40.4 percent) and that number looked like an impossible dream in the first half when they shot 22.9 percent (8 of 35), including missing all 17 3-point attempts.
Syracuse wasn't exactly lighting up the scoreboard, shooting 30.4 percent (7 of 23) and the Orange missed seven of their eight 3-point attempts. Somehow, they led 20-19 at halftime.
Syracuse's previous low for points in a half was 23 in the season-opening 68-46 win over Northern Iowa.
The second half was quite different for Syracuse as it made 12 of 20 shots from the field (60 percent), but the Orange couldn't put the Pirates away because of shooting 17 of 36 from the free throw line.
Syracuse opened a 54-40 lead with 5:58 left on a tip-in by Joseph.
The Pirates then had their only offensive burst of the game, going on a 13-1 run to get within 55-53 with 2:20 to play on two free throws by Jordan Theodore. Pope had seven points in the run, all from in close as he and Robinson stood up to Syracuse's front line, finishing with a 44-32 rebounds advantage.
Jardine scored on a drive 30 seconds later and when Theodore missed to go 0 for 9 in the game, Joseph came down and made one free throw. A rebound basket by Pope made it 58-55 with 51 seconds left, but the Orange were able to hold the Pirates the rest of the way despite missing three of four free throws in the final 16.6 seconds.
Seton Hall finished 3 for 26 on 3s while the Orange were 6 of 17.
The Division I record for most 3-point attempts in a game without making one is 22 by Canisius against St. Bonaventure on Jan. 21, 1995.