Superlatives from Syracuse’s 1-0 loss to Michigan in 1st round of NCAA tournament

first_img Facebook Twitter Google+ Published on November 11, 2017 at 1:35 pm Contact Billy: wmheyen@syr.edu | @Wheyen3 ANN ARBOR, Mich. – No. 14 seed Syracuse (12-7, 2-4 Atlantic Coast) lost to No. 3 seed Michigan (20-2, 8-0 Big Ten) in the first round of the NCAA tournament, 1-0. The first half was a stalemate and Syracuse held firm in the second half even after going down a player to a red card. In overtime, though, U of M won on a sudden-death goal from Meg Dowthwaite.Here are superlatives from the game:The Big Moment: Meg Dowthwaite’s game-winnerUnder 90 seconds into overtime, Michigan crossed the ball toward the penalty spot. Dowthwaite reached out with the side of her stick and deflected the ball at Borg van der Velde. It went to the right of Syracuse’s keeper and into the goal. Senior defender Lies Lagerweij dropped to a squat and put her head in her hands.Syracuse had to play overtime with just five field players after an earlier red card to Elaine Carey and the open space proved too much to defend.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textLowlight: Elaine Carey red cardCarey tipped a shot over the goal with just under 20 minutes left in the game. As the ball moved the other way, one official blew his whistle and pulled a red card from his pocket, directed at Carey. She possibly tangled up with the defender on her near the penalty spot but it was unclear what specific action drew the red.Syracuse had to play 19:30 of the game down a player after the first red card given to the Orange all season. It left the Orange playing in a formation lacking a forward as SU kept its defense intact. There weren’t many outlet options for Syracuse for the rest of the game.Stud: Laura HurffSyracuse needed to defend for much of Saturday’s match and Hurff was central to that plan. While much of the team stayed around a set spot, Hurff appeared to have free reign to cover ground and go win the ball. She jumped passing lanes to intercept the ball, tracked back on defense to catch up to odd-player rushes for Michigan and proved vital on defending corners.With under a minute left, Michigan was awarded a corner and looked to score a decisive goal. But Hurff flew off her goal line when the ball was inserted and got to the shooter to get a piece of her shot. She stifled the play Michigan drew up and gave the Orange a shot to force overtime.Dud: Syracuse offenseMichigan entered the game with the second-best goals against average in the country. Much of its effectiveness at limiting SU offensively was possession. U of M possessed the ball for a majority of the game at even strength, and then controlled the ball for almost all of the last 20 minutes once Carey was sent off.Even when Syracuse had the ball, it was unable to create any chances. SU had two corners but didn’t create much from open play. Roos Weers had a strong shot that Michigan keeper Sam Swenson saved with her right leg to deny the Orange in really its only chance on goal.Highlight: Emma Tufts’ through ball to Jennifer BleakneyLate in the first half, Tufts picked up the ball just past midfield. Two defenders closed in on her but she flipped the ball between them to lead Bleakney down the left side of the field. After making it all the way into the arc, Bleakney was able to direct the ball across the center. Neither Erin Gillingham nor Carey were able to get a clean shot on goal, but Syracuse eventually drew a corner.SU couldn’t convert off the corner when Weers’ shot was deflected wide, but the Tufts through ball may have been Syracuse’s best play – and ensuing best chance — of the first game. Commentslast_img

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *