The Syracuse Orange women’s basketball team successfully sped past South Dakota State over the weekend, and their reward is a matchup with the top-seeded Connecticut Huskies in the second round of the NCAA Tournament. You’re pretty familiar with UConn and their typical brand of postseason bludgeoning. Obviously we hope we can avoid the expected outcome this time around.
Before this game gets going at 9 p.m. ET on ESPN, we predict whether Syracuse can find a way to advance to the Sweet 16.
Syracuse 78, UConn 76
Syracuse played its’ best defensive game of the season on Sunday and is coming off an impressive run in the ACC Tournament. If the team wants to advance to their first Sweet 16 in five years, the Orange will need to match freshman standout Paige Bueckers’ consistent shooting or keep the ball out of her hands entirely and force the other Huskies to shoot three-pointers. Bueckers shoots 47.5% from three, while the rest of the team shoots under 35% on the year. Syracuse holds the crown experience-wise and can use this to trip up a UConn roster that does not have any seniors.I think the game will be close in the end, but I think a game winning shot from ACC Sixth Player of the Year Emily Engstler will seal the Sweet 16 trip for ‘Cuse.
UConn 79, Syracuse 68
With Syracuse having limited depth tonight I think they will hang close but run out of steam in the final quarter. It will be interesting to see if the Orange try to work the ball inside to Kamila Cardoso early and often and it will be fun to watch Tiana go head to head with the Huskies’ Paige Bueckers. It’s unfortunate for Syracuse to have to face UConn this early in the Tournament but I think they will give the Huskies a scare tonight.
UConn 80, Syracuse 65
The score above looks lopsided, but I think it’s actually UConn that has the big fourth quarter to pull ahead — instead of Syracuse, as has been the case for much of the 2020-21 season. SU showed toughness vs. South Dakota State, but this short rotation’s going to be taxed in a completely different way against the Huskies. Assuming turnover numbers go up and the Orange just get taken out of their game a bit by a more talented opponent, UConn comes away with the win here... not without some attempted shooting heroics from Emily Engstler, however.
Now it’s your turn...
Who wins this second round game between Syracuse and UConn?
This poll is closed
Syracuse, and ANYTHING’S POSSIBLE!!!!!!!!!
UConn, and let’s just hope we can avoid the Huskies’ region next year