No. 12 seed Syracuse (18-13) opened the 2012 BIG EAST women's basketball championship presented by American Eagle Outfitters with a 57-47 win over No. 13 seed Providence (13-17). Junior Kayla Alexander had 15 points and nine rebounds to lead the Orange, while senior teammate Iasia Hemingway added 15.
Providence scored the first point of the game, a free throw, before Syracuse answered with the first field goal of the contest and led 2-1. The Orange never trailed the rest of the game.
Both teams were sluggish from the field. The Orange shot 31.7-percent, including 0-6 from 3-point range. Providence shot 30.6-percent from the field, and was just 1-of-12 from 3-point range.
Junior Symone Roberts led the Friars with 12 points.
With the win, the Orange advance to play No. 5 seed West Virginia on Saturday at Noon. It is the third straight year Syracuse has won its opening game of the BIG EAST tournament.