Top 25 basketball • Forward C.J. Fair leads undefeated Orange to victory.
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New York • C.J. Fair didn't have many chances to be the main option for Syracuse last season.
Now he has plenty.
The 6-foot-8 forward has gone from the Orange's fourth option to No. 1, and he showed why Sunday in a 68-63 victory over St. John's at Madison Square Garden.
"We went to C.J., and he made a couple of tough plays. Shots that had to be made," coach Jim Boeheim said. "He's been a key player. He wasn't our first option last year but he's always made big shots, big plays for us."
Fair hit three big shots from the same spot about 15 feet from the basket on the right baseline. The smooth left-handed shooter tied the game from there at 58 with 6:51 to go, then he made two more in the final 3 minutes as the second-ranked Orange (10-0) were able to open a lead as big as seven points.
Fair and freshman guard Tyler Ennis both scored 21 points to lead the Orange.
No. 10 Villanova 73, La Salle 52 • In Villanova, Pa., Darrun Hilliard scored 21 points and Josh Hart added 13, lifting undefeated Villanova past La Salle.
The Wildcats are 10-0 for the first time since the 2005-06 season, and three shy of matching the program-best 13-0 start in 1937-38.
• No. 2 Syracuse 68,St. John's 63
• No. 10 Villanova 73,La Salle 52
• No. 24 Missouri 66,Western Michigan 60