While it was a tournament game, it was also a home game for the Orange being played in the Carrier Dome as Syracuse was awarded home field as a result of their seeding.
The game was close the whole way through. At halftime, things were knotted up 5-5 and both teams played extremely good defense. However, Syracuse broke through in the second half.
The Orange answered a two goal start of the half by USC with a 6-1 run to go up 11-8. USC would then storm back.
While attempting to kill the clock late in the game up 11-10, 'Cuse made a crucial mistake.
Pressured by USC they fed to ball to Kelly Cross. Cross, the tallest girl on the Orange offense standing nearly six-feet, is not a ball handler. Southern California quickly realized SU's mistake, locking down Cross, doubling her and causing the turnover.
The lost possession cost Syracuse the lead. If not for some good defense in the final moments, USC could've won the game when they held the ball for the last shot but they failed to convert.
Kayla Treanor, the best draw specialist in the country, struggled at the circle all day and lost the opening draw in OT. But Syracuse would quickly force a turnover. That's when Cross became a hero. After giving up the turnover that caused overtime, she scored the game-winning goal to send the Orange to championship weekend.
Syracuse has now won both of its NCAA tourney games by one goal each. SU will play the winner of Maryland/Massachusetts for a right to return to the championship game.
It is safe to assume that the Terps will be their opponent, making it a Final Four rematch from last year. Maryland won that game 10-8 and has knocked SU out of the tournament in three-consecutive years.
The game will be played on May 27, 2016 in Philadelphia and will be broadcast on ESPN3.