SYRACUSE, New York (Ticker) -- Hakim Warrick scored 20 points as sixth-ranked Syracuse struggled to get past Princeton, 56-45, in the second round of the Coaches vs. Cancer Classic.
Warrick and Demetris Nichols combined for 18 points in the first half as the Orange managed a 28-22 lead at intermission. Nichols finished with 14 points.
Unlike Friday's 60-point win over Northern Colorado, when it scored the game's first 24 points, Syracuse (2-0) got off to a sluggish start against the deliberate Tigers. Scott Greeman's 3-pointer gave Princeton a 14-5 lead with 13:25 left in the first half.
"When you play Princeton, it's always going to be a battle," Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim said. "It's always going to be a tough game."
The Tigers tied the game, 40-40, on Max Schafer's 3-pointer with 8:43 remaining, Princeton's last basket. The final score represented Syracuse's biggest cushion.
"We made some stops at the end of the game when we had to," Boeheim said.
Will Venable scored 17 points and Judson Wallace added 11 for the Tigers, who are beginning their first season under former Air Force coach Joe Scott.
Princeton shot 50 (9-for-18) in the first half but just 30 percent (6-of-20) after halftime. The Orange held the Tigers to 25 percent (5-of-20) from 3-point range.
"I guess we wasted a lot of time at practice working on our man-to-man defense," Boeheim added. "We did a poor job in the man-to-man but we did a really good job in our zone."
The Orange got a lift off the bench from Terrance Roberts, who injured his right knee Thursday. Roberts chipped in with eight points and six rebounds.
"We keyed in on our defense tonight and we showed we can get it done with our defense," Roberts said.
Syracuse will Mississippi State in the semifinals of the expanded 16-team tournament Thursday in New York.