Fast reaction: 3 takeaways from No. 2 seed Syracuse’s 11-10 win over No. 15 Yale

first_img Published on May 14, 2017 at 10:08 pm Contact Charlie: | @charliedisturco Facebook Twitter Google+ ­­­­In the opening round of the NCAA tournament, second-seeded Syracuse (13-2, 4-0 Atlantic Coast) knocked off No. 15 seed Yale (10-6, 5-1 Ivy), 11-10, on Sunday night at the Carrier Dome. Syracuse’s one-goal game marked the team’s 11th single-score bout this season. Freshman Jamie Trimboli and senior Nick Mariano each scored a pair of goals in a back and forth game that ended with redshirt freshman Stephen Rehfuss’ go-ahead goal with just over two minutes left. Despite winning just four faceoffs all game, Syracuse clawed back and defeated the Bulldogs.Here are three quick reactions to SU’s win over Yale.Stephen Rehfuss plays heroReceiving the pass from Jordan Evans, Rehfuss turned and darted around the cage. As the clock neared two minutes and Syracuse remained knotted in a 10-all tie. Coming around the cage and nearing the 15-yard line, Rehfuss turned and fired, hitting the back of the net. He took a couple of steps forward and fist pumped as the crowd erupted.For the first time all game, Rehfuss found the back of the net. And it came when Syracuse needed it badly.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textSU’s Achilles heel reappears Ben Williams’ inconsistency seemed to dissipate as the NCAA tournament neared. All season he has struggled at the faceoff X, a location he dominated for three years prior. But on Sunday night, the same Williams that went 21 minutes, 16 seconds without a win in the ACC tournament against North Carolina, reappeared. After winning the opening faceoff, Williams lost seven straight before being replaced by Danny Varello — a common substitute for SU head coach John Desko when Williams struggles. Even Varello struggled, losing three straight before Williams jogged back onto the field.Over 40 minutes separated Syracuse’s first faceoff win with its second. Yet, the team trailed by just two at the time. Varello followed up that win with his second — SU’s third overall — eventually resulting in an Orange goal and an 8-8 tie.The rest of the game remained similar: Varello or Williams would approach the faceoff X and usually jogged off in defeat. But somehow, despite the failures at the X, Syracuse managed to keep the game within striking distance.Third-quarter run saves gameEntering halftime, Syracuse trailed by two. The team had just one second-quarter goal and four total to its name. The offense struggled to find possession time from the struggles at the faceoff X. But, in the third quarter, the defense buckled down and faceoffs began to trickle SU’s way.In the third quarter, SU forced three turnovers and won the ground ball battle, despite trailing 22-7 in grounders at the half. A 5-1 run followed and for the first time since the second quarter, SU gripped onto a one-goal lead.The late third-quarter run gave the Orange enough gas to pull out a lead. While that dissipated in the fourth, the run allowed SU to remain within striking distance until Rehfuss put the game away with a bullet. Commentslast_img read more

Syracuse shut down by North Carolina’s Brittany Pickett in 5-1 loss

first_imgLeading off in the bottom of the first for Syracuse, Alicia Hansen stood in the batter’s box, facing off with North Carolina starting pitcher Brittany Pickett. She struck out swinging. So did Sammy Fernandez in the at bat immediately after. And Bryce Holmgren in the at bat after that.Syracuse’s bats were never able to turn it around. North Carolina (28-24, 15-7 Atlantic Coast) defeated the Orange (27-19, 8-12), 5-1, behind a seven strikeout, three-hit outing for Pickett, who also hit a three-run homerun in the game.“She’s just a great pitcher overall,” Holmgren said. “And she does a very good job of mixing speeds and mixing locations and so that’s just one of the reasons she’s effective.”Pickett is now 26-10 on the season with a 2.37 ERA and 192 strikeouts on the year. She has been a workhorse for the Tar Heels all year, pitching 274.2 innings. Holmgren said the Orange came into the game expecting her “to come and bring it.”Syracuse head coach Mike Bosch said Pickett’s command and movement are part of what makes her a high-quality pitcher, as well as the fact that she is a lefty. Bosch tried to encourage adjustments in SU’s approach in preparation for Pickett.AdvertisementThis is placeholder text“We tried to hit early in the count, tried to hit pitches that were flat,” Bosch said. “But again, hats off to her, she threw a good game.”The game was tight early, with Syracuse holding down a 1-0 lead into the fifth inning. SU pitcher Alexa Romero had pitched well up to that point, only allowing two hits. However, a three-run home run by Pickett broke the game open and forced Romero, who Bosch said was also nursing a blister on her finger, to exit the game.Romero felt she had to attack the zone while the game was still close.“When [games] are like 0-0, 1-0, 2-0, I really just go out there and pound the zone and get after it,” Romero said. “2-0, 1-0 games you can’t let up at all because they’ll get scores and they’ll hit off of you.”After Romero allowed five runs in the top of the fifth, Syracuse needed an answer in the bottom half. Hannah Dossett led off with a single. The next two Orange batters flew out. A two-out walk put two runners on for SU’s three-hitter, Bryce Holmgren. But she grounded to the shortstop to end the inning.Despite Syracuse’s lack of run support on offense, Holmgren was pleased the Orange seemed to adjust more to Pickett’s pitching by the end. Syracuse put the ball in play more frequently in the last three innings, striking out just once over that frame after striking out six times in the first four innings.Still, Bosch knew his team didn’t do enough.“I thought we could’ve made some better contact with balls but we’ll make some adjustments,” Bosch said. “See if we can do better with it tomorrow.” Comments Facebook Twitter Google+ Published on April 27, 2018 at 8:08 pm Contact Eric: estorms@syr.edulast_img read more