Orange falls to No. 5 Louisville, exit ACC Tournament in good spirits

The Syracuse women’s basketball team enjoyed a good run without some of its key players in the Atlantic Coast Conference tournament. In the end, the Cardinals prevail and move on to the finals.
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The Syracuse women’s basketball team enjoyed a good run without some of its key players in the Atlantic Coast Conference tournament, but in the end, the Cardinals prevail and move on to the finals.

Louisville got off to a fast start against the Orange in the semifinals, outscoring the Orange 19-to-13 in the first quarter. The Orange shot a woeful 30% from the floor in the first. 

Orange’s defense kept the team in the game for much of the first half as the Cardinals' talented backcourt featuring senior Dana Evans and freshman Hailey Van Lith was held to 10 points in the opening half.

On the other end, the Cardinals took advantage of the Orange’s carelessness with the ball, scoring 19 points off 15 SU turnovers.

Three-point shooting was a key difference in the matchup – the Orange was held without a 3-point field goal in the opening half. Digna Struatmane broke the spell in the third quarter, followed by Emily Engstler, who was Syracuse’s best player on the court Saturday with a 21 point, 10 rebound double-double performance. Alas, the Orange was 3-for-17 from beyond the 3-point arc for the game while the Cardinals shot 6-for-20. 

Nonetheless, the Orange held its own in the game and for that matter, in the ACC tournament. Considering the team was without point guard Tiana Mangakahia and freshman Priscilla Williams, Syracuse should go home in good spirits with each player expected back for the NCAA tournament.