Another Hoops Squad Worthy of Fan's Attention

There's another basketball program on The Hill that could make a run in March.

Yes the Syracuse men’s basketball team is banned from postseason play after announcing the self-imposed punishment on Wednesday. But there is an Orange basketball squad having a very good year on the Hill. One that will be allowed to play in the postseason and has a legitimate shot at making a run in the NCAA Tournament.

That would be the Syracuse women’s basketball team.

This year’s Orange squad has performed very well, boasting a 16-7 record. All seven losses were to teams ranked in the top-20 at the time. Many of those games going down to the wire with Syracuse coming up just short.

In fact, the nation’s top-ranked team, South Carolina, had to rally late to beat the Orange by four. The Gamecocks still have not lost this season. The only team to come closer to defeating them was Duke.

That same Duke team, currently ranked #15 after spending much of the year in the top-10, also had to rally late to beat Syracuse at Cameron Indoor.

On Thursday, the Orange women finally got their win over a ranked team, knocking off #13 North Carolina 61-56. Point guard Alexis Peterson led Syracuse with 20 points in the victory and Taylor Ford came off the bench to contribute 12.

They play a brand of exciting basketball, utilizing a two-three zone as well as a full court press. They run up and down the floor, take threes in transition and force a lot of turnovers.

Brianna Butler is a star at guard. The aforementioned Peterson can light it up on any given night. Center Briana Day is long, can run the floor and crashes the boards with the best of them.

Remember, this was a program that would hope to hit the .500 mark, but would often fall well short of that. Since Hillsman has taken over, Syracuse has recruited nationally and continued to improve year after year. Now they have the talent to compete with anyone. He’s done a remarkable job over the past several seasons and it’s time he receives some recognition.

In the three years prior to Hillsman taking over, Syracuse went 6-21, 13-16 and 9-18. In his second year as the head coach, he led Syracuse to a 22-9 record and berth in the NCAA Tournament. Last season, they won their first game in program history in the Big Dance.

So come March, if you’re clamoring for some Syracuse basketball and want to see if the Orange can make a run, give head coach Quentin Hillsman’s bunch a shot. He’s building a big time program and it may be a perfect time to hop on board. Watch them on television, go to one of the games, and see major division one basketball with a team that can compete with the nation’s best.

Remember, this was a program that would hope to hit the .500 mark, but would often fall well short of that. Since Hillsman has taken over, Syracuse has recruited nationally and continued to improve year after year. Now they have the talent to compete with anyone. He’s done a remarkable job over the past several seasons and it’s time he receives some recognition.


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