It is commonly said that the only way a team wins a championship is if everyone does the job they are asked. That could be something as simple as shoot the open three or gain proper rebounding position in the lane, or it could be to dominate inside or direct the offense for 40 minutes. No matter what, a single superstar cannot win a championship by themselves. Lebron James can't do it. Kobe Bryant couldn't do it. Maya Moore can't do it either.
For the Lady Orange, it works for them that they don't have that one superstar player that dominates the game every night. This team is made up of a bunch of moving parts that have to work together for a Syracuse win. If everything is hitting on all cylinders, the Lady Orange can even dominate the game.
But sometimes, you need a little luck. This week, everything wasn't going the Lady Orange's way, but they still came out with back-to-back blowouts victories. Alexis Peterson, the closest thing to a superstar this team has played only one minute of the 71-48 win over Pittsburgh. In Sunday's 91-65 win at Wake Forest, they got into foul trouble. But with most things clicking and a little luck, the Lady Orange did what they were supposed to do. Win.
Highlights of the Week
Briana Day: 23 points, 13 rebounds, 3 blocks, 2 steals, 37 minutes
The thing that impresses me the most about Briana Day is the amount of work she can do no matter how much or how little playing time she gets. She only played 20 minutes in the blowout of Pittsburgh, but she recorded her third double-double of the season. Against Wake Forest, while in foul trouble, she was 4-5 from the floor and still managed to grab three offensive boards. She impacts the game in so many ways simply because of her size. She has become more reliable as conference play heats up, and if she continues to play at this high level, she will force teams to game-plan for her even more than they already have to.
Maggie Morrison: 23 points, 6 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals, 53 minutes
Maggie Morrison is one of the players that probably doesn't get the credit she deserves for the Orange. She is always one of the first two off the bench and can provide a spark both on the defensive end where she uses her quickness to get steals or get a hand in a shooters face and on the offensive end where she can knock down threes with anyone on the team. This week was no different, scoring 12 and 11 points with four three pointers. As of late, she has been attacking the rim more and trying to get more easy looks from close, which will only help the team more.
Lowlights of the Week
Much like the men this week, when you win two games in this fashion, its hard to pick out even one player that needs to step it up. I thought about putting Brianna Butler her because of her 2-13 performance against Pitt, but then she followed that up with a game-high 19 points at Wake Forest. I thought maybe about Isabella Slim because there are times she is on the floor that she isn't really doing anything to help the team, but then I remember her rebounding and defensive intensity she brings to the team. This week, I'm not including a lowlight because as I've said, when a team has no true lone superstar, but everyone plays their role to near perfection, this team could be something special. This week showed what they can be.
The Lady Orange, now ranked No. 24 in the country have a big meeting at No. 3 Notre Dame on Thursday. The Fighting Irish have only one blemish on their record, a 91-81 defeat to the top ranked UConn Huskies. After what is sure to be a battle, the women return to the Dome next Monday to take on Lousiville. As they did this week, if they want to stick to their winning ways, the ladies will have to keep doing their jobs.