Syracuse (8-3, 4-0) disposed of Louisville (8-5, 0-4) Friday evening at the Carrier Dome and at the same time, picked apart every defensive scheme in the book en route to a 19-7 win.
Louisville tried its version of a zone backer, it didn't work. The Orange found the slightest of openings and capitalized, scoring the game's first five goals before Cardinals' Laura Patterson found the back of the net on a free position shot.
"We work long and hard on how to understand and attack the zone," Syracuse head coach Gary Gait said. "We were prepared and made adjustment every time and we weren't caught off guard."
Alongside junior Alyssa Murray, senior Michelle Tumolo anchored the Orange's attack with seven points apiece. Tumolo was also faceguarded sporadically by Louisville's Leslee Hefner.
"We kind of expect it now," Tumolo said.
The Cardinals would score back-to-back goals by Nikki Boltja and Carissa Corbett to make it 6-3, however, the Orange's solid defense turned into offense, scoring six unanswered goals to end the half and head into the locker with a comfortable 12-3 lead.
"The team came out ready to play," Gait said. "We jumped on them early, played tough and focused. A much different effort then the last game we played. It was nice to see."
Syracuse's largest lead would come at the 21:39 mark when Tumolo found Murray to make it 16-3. Three consecutive goals by the Cardinals to cut the deficit to 10 was not enough as the Orange would find scoring from Murray, freshman Kayla Treanor and senior Bridget Daley.
Daley and freshman Maddy Huegel were key contributors in shutting out Monica Negron on the circle. Coming into the contest, Negron had 51 draw controls. She had none on the evening.
"Bridget's been working hard," Gait said. "She had great communication with Kailah Kempney. That's where she picked up most of her draw controls. Knowing the call, where the ball's going and understanding the signal that communication is key."
He continued, "Maddy has been great all year on the draw. She has a knack for getting to it and making plays and getting it into her stick. We are happy with the way she has been playing."
The Orange will look to extend its BIG EAST winning streak to 17 when it faces Cincinnati on Sunday, April 15, at 1 p.m.
Louisville no match for Syracuse
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