So far, the Felisha Legette-Jack era of Syracuse Orange women’s basketball is off to a dominant (and undefeated) start. After back-to-back landslide wins against Stony Brook Seawolves and Colgate Raiders, the team continued the trend with a 92-59 trouncing of the Binghamton Bearcats.
Coach Legette-Jack sent out Dyaisha Fair (G), Teisha Hyman (G), Alaina Rice (G), Dariauna Lewis (F), and Asia Strong (F) to start things off.
Alaina Rice scored the first basket from Syracuse, picking up right where she left off after scoring a team-high 16 points against Colgate. Both teams traded baskets to start the game, with each program shooting exactly 50% on a combined 18 attempts in the game’s first six minutes.
While Syracuse did give up threes in back-to-back possessions at one point, the extra pressure on defense forced the Bearcats into turnovers and difficult shots. The Orange forced 9 turnovers in the first quarter alone while holding the Bearcats to just 29% shooting after ten minutes of action.
‘Cuse outscored Binghamton by 11 points in the second quarter, extending the team’s lead to 25 points over the Bearcats by halftime. Despite giving up 5 threes on 13 attempts, the Orange held the Bearcats to just 4/24 shooting on two-point attempts. On offense, the team shot above 50% at the half, with Dyaisha Fair (11 points) and Dariuana Lewis (8 points) leading the way for Syracuse.
At the end of the third, Syracuse led Binghamton 73-38, finishing the quarter on a 15-4 run to extend their lead to the largest of the night. Teisha Hyman got hot at the beginning of the second half, capping off the quarter with a buzzer-beating layup. Both teams eventually put their benches in for the remainder of the game, with the outcome already decided.
Behind an all-around defensive effort, Syracuse held the Bearcats to just 31% shooting and forced 23 turnovers. At the start of the season, FLJ preached toughness and defense. Three games into the season, the team is granting her wish.
Syracuse vs. Binghampton by the numbers:
- On offense, it was a balanced attack from the Orange, with seven players scoring at least seven points and three players finishing in double-figures.
- Binghamton shot 10/25 (40%) from three against Syracuse’s perimeter defense but was held to just 12/46 (26%) from two-point range.
- The Orange’s 23 forced turnovers against the Bearcats were the most in a game this season.
- Dariuana Lewis secured her third-straight double-double of the season, finishing with 17 points, 10 rebounds, and 4 blocks on the night.
- The Orange attacked the paint at will tonight against the Bearcats. Syracuse took just seven three-pointers tonight but finished with 68 (!!!) points in the paint against Binghamton.
Biggest Takeaways of the Game:
Dariuana Lewis’s two way-production continues: Dyaisha Fair was the transfer player in the spotlight for Syracuse, but quietly, Lewish continues to excel on both ends of the court as the starting forward.
Through three games, Lewis is averaging 14.6 PPG, 12 RPG, and 3.3 BPG on 59% shooting from the field. She’s given the Orange a tenacious rebounder, hard-nosed defender, and incredible shot-blocker. On offense, Lewis has thrived especially in transition and on second-chance opportunities.
The Orange are prioritizing attacking the basket on offense: I hinted at this earlier, but Syracuse isn’t the greatest shooting team in the world. Through the team’s first two games, Syracuse is tied for 319th in the NCAA in three-point percentage, and tonight’s 1/7 effort won’t do much to help out.
However, the Orange continue to crash the glass, put pressure at the rim, and look for good shots as close to the basket as possible. Before yesterday’s game, Syracuse was tied for 18th in the NCAA in rebounding margin. As a result, Syracuse has continued to draw fouls on opponents and attack the rim relentlessly.
Syracuse shuts down the paint: In the win versus Binghamton, Syracuse looked its best on the defensive end. The team put its foot on the gas for 40 straight minutes, allowing few opportunities at the rim and forcing Binghamton to put some points up along the perimeter.
In the Bearcats’ first two games, the team shot 11/24 from three. That included an outlier against Army, where Binghamton finished 9/14 overall from behind the line. It was a smart strategy, and moving down the road this season, it might be the best defensive strategy for a team with more physicality in the paint but less height and size on the perimeter.
Next game on the agenda:
Looking to stay undefeated, Syracuse will next face off against the Long Island University Sharks at 7 pm in the JMA Wireless Dome. The Sharks will enter the game at 2-1 on the season, with wins against Ohio University and Hartford. In 2021-2022, LIU finished 9-18 overall and 9-9 in the Northeast Conference.
Let the winning streak continue for Coach Legette-Jack and company.