clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Syracuse women’s basketball: what to watch for versus #15 Notre Dame

Can the Orange pull off the improbable in South Bend?

NCAA Womens Basketball: Miami-Florida at Notre Dame Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

The #22 Syracuse Orange women’s basketball team (16-2, 6-1) returns to the court in South Bend, Indiana aiming for its first ever road win in program history versus the #15 Notre Dame Fighting Irish (14-3, 5-2).

In the second of two matchups this year between Syracuse and Notre Dame, the Orange are hoping to achieve two things they’ve never done before — beat the Fighting Irish on the road and twice in the same season. Syracuse upset Notre Dame 86-81 on New Year’s Eve, which handed the team its first AP top 25 win this year.

The Orange enter Thursday’s game on a five-game winning streak and are back in the AP top 25 for the second time this year. The Fighting Irish have a four-game winning streak of their own and are 7-1 this season at home.

Tip-off between Syracuse and Notre Dame is set for 7 p.m. EST in South Bend. The game will be available for stream on the ACC Network+.

Here’s what you need to know for Thursday night’s game:

  1. Battle of the offenses: Syracuse will yet again need to rely on someone outside of Dyaisha Fair to step up and have a big-time performance (Alyssa Latham notably shined during the home game versus Notre Dame earlier this year). The Fighting Irish boast the 10th-best scoring offense in the country (first in the ACC), and while Syracuse isn’t far behind with the scoring (27th-best), it needed 86 points to squeak by at home and might need another similar-ish scoring night to pull the upset off.
  2. Some chance at redemption: The last time Syracuse played one of the top-half ACC teams on the road (North Carolina), it only scored 51 points and lost by 24 points — the program’s worst loss all year by a mile. The history shows this will be a tall task, but this year’s team has the special combination of depth and chemistry to pull off another miraculous win. The Orange have done so multiple times all year, and who’s to say it can’t happen on Thursday.
  3. The game will be made in the fourth quarter: The last three games have shown that the final quarter has proven to be where the matchup between the Orange and Fighting Irish swings the most. Last season, Syracuse was outscored in both fourth quarters during last year’s home-and-home series versus the Fighting Irish. This year, a 25-16 advantage in the fourth quarter propelled the Orange to that upset win on New Year’s Eve. If Syracuse can make its usual scoring run in the third quarter, they’ll have to come through yet again in the clutch.

Syracuse versus #15 Notre Dame preview by the numbers

All-time: Syracuse is 4-38 all-time versus Notre Dame dating back to the 1987-1988 season, but that includes a ghastly 0-19 record away from the Dome.

Last matchup: The Orange earlier this season defeated Notre Dame for the first time since the 2020-2021 season in a memorable New Year’s eve clash.

Win/loss implications: A win gives Syracuse its third AP top 25 win of the season and its first road win versus Notre Dame in program history, while a loss would end the Orange’s five-game winning streak.

Prediction: I think this could be a bit closer of a game than most would expect, but I’ve got Notre Dame winning 86-75.

#22 Syracuse vs. #15 Notre Dame Team Stats

Statistical Categories Syracuse Notre Dame
Statistical Categories Syracuse Notre Dame
PPG 78.4 84.4
Opponent PPG 63.5 60
Margin of Victory plus-14.9 plus-24.4
FG% 44% 48%
Defensive FG% 40% 38%
3FG% 33% 36%
Defensive 3FG% 30% 27%
FT% 74% 76%
RPG 34.5 42.8
APG 13.7 17.7
T/O 14.9 15.8
A/T ratio 0.9 4.9
SPG 9.9 12.4
BPG 4.8 4.5