The No. 18 Syracuse Orange women’s basketball team (1-1) fell to the No. 3 Oregon Ducks (2-0) on Saturday, 75-73. Three consecutive threes by Oregon late in the fourth quarter ended up being what led the Ducks to the win.
Syracuse had a 67-61 lead with two minutes left in the fourth quarter, when Oregon went on a 9-0 run, all coming from three-point range. Guard Maite Cazorla hit two straight to tie the game at 67, and then forward Erin Boley hit the go-ahead three. The Orange finished the game 5-28 from three-point range, which is just under 18 percent, as opposed to 35 percent on 11-31 from Oregon.
SU trailed by as many as 15 in the second quarter, but they were able to get back in the game by winning the battle down low. The team scored 42 points in the paint, while holding Oregon to 18. Another way Syracuse was able to mount the comeback was its bench production. The Orange had 29 bench points and held the Ducks to only eight from their reserves.
1:28 3Q | Two-point game after this crafty play pic.twitter.com/qgpaxnMVY8— 'Cuse Women's Hoops (@CuseWBB) November 10, 2018
Oregon was held to 36 percent shooting from the field, but Oregon was able to get to the free throw line and convert. The Ducks finished 18-of-25 from the line, while Syracuse was 6-7. Three Oregon players had six or more free throw attempts alone. The Orange won the battle on the boards, out-rebounding Oregon 45-36, but Oregon’s ability to hit timely threes and get to the free throw line was too much for Syracuse to overcome.
Ducks guard Sabrina Ionescu had a great performance, with 26 points, 10 rebounds, and six assists. Ionescu is regarded as the best player in the country by many and she proved why. Ruthy Hebard added 11 points, 14 rebounds, and three blocks for Oregon and was all over the court making her presence felt.
Syracuse guard Tiana Mangakahia led the team with 15 points and eight assists. Her toughness and leadership kept the Orange in the game throughout. Gabrielle Cooper and Amaya Finklea-Guity were tied for second on the team with 11 points each. Even with the loss, Syracuse showed that it won’t lay down for any opponent and has the determination to fight back from a double-digit deficit (something they hopefully won’t have to do too often this year)
Next up for Syracuse is Texas A&M. The game tips off at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, November 14 in White Plains, N.Y.