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Syracuse women’s basketball: all-around scoring effort guides Orange to 77-56 win over Wake Forest

The Orange are back in business again.

Syracuse v Maryland Photo by G Fiume/Getty Images

In one of the best single-game performances of the season so far, the Syracuse Orange women’s basketball team (13-2, 3-1) rediscovered its offense to cruise past the Wake Forest Demon Deacons (4-12, 0-4) 77-56 on Thursday morning to secure its first road win against an ACC opponent this year.

Syracuse overcame two consecutive inefficient scoring games and shot 54% from the field against Wake Forest. The Orange took as much as a 15-point lead in the first half, and a big-time scoring run in the third quarter allowed Syracuse to come away from the LJVM Coliseum’s “kids day” environment with a win in a game where ‘Cuse never trailed by more than two points.

Dyaisha Fair led the way for Syracuse with 21 points on 9/17 shooting, her eighth 20-point game of the season, to lead all scorers. However, it truly was an all-around scoring day for Syracuse — three different players (Fair, Georgia Woolley and Alyssa Latham) finished in double-figures, six total players had at least six points and nine different players scored at least one basket.

Woolley finished with 15 points on superb efficiency (7/10 from the field) and Latham notched in 11 points, five rebounds, three assists and two steals. Both Alaina Rice (9 points and 7 rebounds) and Kyra Wood (8 points and 7 rebounds) rounded things out for the starters, while Sophie Burrows drilled two threes off the bench to finish with six points.

The Orange held Wake Forest to 37% shooting in the game and Malaya Cowles (13 points) was the only player for the Demon Deacons which reached double-digits. Syracuse also outscored the Demon Deacons 18-5 in points off turnovers.

Syracuse overcame an early three-minute cold streak with a pair of offensive rebounds, which led to Wood scoring the Orange’s first basket and Fair drilling the team’s first three. The offense was sluggish early, but four quick turnovers by Wake Forest allowed the Orange to keep the game tied at 7-7 by the first media timeout.

Defense proved to be an early deciding factor for the Orange, who held the Demon Deacons to 3/12 shooting and forced seven turnovers in the first quarter. Wake Forest went nearly six minutes without a field goal at one point, and that allowed Syracuse to use a 7-0 run to take a 14-9 lead heading into the second quarter. Fair and Woolley scored 10 of the Orange’s first 14 points.

Syracuse’s hot start continued in the second quarter, with the Orange kicking things off with a 10-0 scoring run to extend their lead to 15 points (24-9) with around five minutes in the first half to go. Wake Forest remained on a cold streak and was shooting just 3/19 (16%) at one point, and the Demon Deacons were forced to call timeout. Back-to-back scores off the bench from Kennedi Perkins and Saniaa Wilson powered the Orange to their first double-digit lead of the game.

Wake Forest finally started to get going towards the end of the half and made four consecutive baskets to Syracuse’s lead down to as low as six points (25-19), but a three-pointer from Sophie Burrows off the bench ended what was a 10-1 run by Wake Forest.

Syracuse closed the quarter on a much better note and entered halftime up 30-21. Eight different players for Syracuse scored at least one basket in the half, with Fair’s 10 points leading the way. Syracuse shot 48% in the first half and held the Demon Deacons to 7/24 shooting from the field heading into the third quarter.

Just like the first half, Wood scored Syracuse’s first basket in the half as the Orange yet again caught fire to begin the period. Wood and Woolley each scored twice to help extend Syracuse’s lead back to 15 points. After Wake Forest cut the lead down to 42-32, Burrows (again) drilled another three to keep Syracuse out in front by double-digits.

Syracuse’s offense continued to look like its usual self as the Orange scored 25 points in the third quarter alone to extend their lead by as much as 16 points — the team’s largest lead all game.

The Orange ended the quarter with six makes in seven possessions and entered the fourth quarter up 55-39. Syracuse’s double-digit lead was never in danger after the Orange were up as much as 25 points in the fourth quarter thanks to a late basket from Marilena Trianafylli.

Syracuse notched its second-straight win and moves to 3-1 against the ACC this season. The Orange will return to the JMA Wireless Dome on Sunday afternoon for a matchup versus the Clemson Tigers (8-7, 1-2).