No. 4 Syracuse holds off No. 13 Loyola’s 2nd half comeback

first_img Published on February 27, 2019 at 6:23 pm Contact Kaci: klwasile@syr.edu Comments Facebook Twitter Google+center_img After Syracuse’s win over Loyola, SU head coach Gary Gait said the team had something to prove after the second half of last Sunday’s game against Northwestern. The Orange had entered that half up one. They scored two early, then suffered an almost 20-minute scoring drought where the Wildcats scored five straight goals. Though Syracuse would eventually win in overtime, the contest reaffirmed a trend SU has followed all season. It provided motivation to display against Loyola the explosive first-half offense a majority of SU’s opponents have seen so far this season. In the 20th meeting between No. 4 Syracuse (5-1, 0-1 Atlantic Coast) and No. 13 Loyola (1-2), the Orange dominated offensively at the start of the game and, when their production started to drop off, that domination would keep them on top. In the end, the Orange held on, winning 15-11.“They came out in the first half and built a solid lead,” Gait said, “and kept it.” The first 13 minutes of the game followed SU’s early season narrative: get an early lead and make it as big as possible. Against Connecticut in the season opener, there were eight goals in the first eight minutes. Against Binghamton, the Orange scored nine in the first half, not allowing the Bearcats to score until the very last second. Even against then-No. 1 Boston College SU was able to go up 7-2 but lost the lead in the second half and picked up its first loss of the season. On Wednesday, Syracuse put up 12 in the opening frame.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textNicole Levy started the opening scoring run. Sophomore Sam Swart darted across the field and passed to an open Levy. The senior attack caught the ball, planted her feet and swung her stick completely around her body, building momentum as the ball flew into the net.SU scored six times in the following 10 minutes, and its lead grew. As Syracuse kept scoring, Loyola kept trying different things to stop it.After Natalie Wallon assisted Megan Carney to put SU up 9-1, Loyola changed goalies. Kaitlyn Larsson came in with 10 minutes left in the half. A minute later, Hawryschuk shot, hit the post and Mary Rahal scooped the rebound and scored. Larsson let in three goals and didn’t return to start the second half.Then Loyola’s defense tried pressing. It worked on one possession when Syracuse faced a shot clock violation. But the next time the Greyhounds pressed, Hawryschuk was awarded a free position shot.The first half showed the offense taking good quality shots, Gait said, while the second half attempts faltered. Syracuse went 12-of-18 in the first half and 3-of-12 in the second. Gait also said part of the reason Syracuse struggled in the second half is because of the Greyhounds’ adjustments. They were more physical toward SU’s hands and arms, which caused a lot more turnovers. They took advantage of fast breaks. They adjusted their set pieces and capitalized off them. Levy agreed that the Orange weren’t putting their shots away in the second half but didn’t nessicarily think it was anything specific Loyola did. “It was more us having to dial in on ourselves,” Levy said. While SU was in a scoring slump, Loyola roared back. They scored seven goals to SU’s three. The Greyhounds were able to find ways to capitalize on SU’s mistakes. Late in the period, Meaghan Tyrrell had the ball, ran into Loyola players and turned the ball over. The Greyhounds then took the ball and ran it down the field where Rosenzweig scored, diminishing SU’s once nine-goal lead to five.Immediately after the Loyola goal – it’s fourth straight – Wallon took the ball down the field and connected with Levy for her third goal of the game. Syracuse was able to respond just enough to keep Loyola from winning.After the game, Levy said: “We’re going to bounce back and get over this second half groove we’re stuck in.”last_img

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