Like their male counterparts, the Syracuse women’s basketball team clinched a Sweet Sixteen berth on Sunday, marking the first time in school history that both programs have advanced that deep in the NCAA Tournament. The women’s team earned their place on the Carrier Dome hardwood, ending the season of 12th-seeded Albany with a 76-59 victory.
The Orange outscored the Great Danes in each quarter, building a 16-point lead with a decisive 21-12 third quarter performance. For the second straight game, the SU defense forced 23 turnovers, this time turning them into 20 points.
Brittney Sykes paced Syracuse with 24 points and also collected five steals. Alexis Peterson cracked the 20-point barrier for the second straight outing, this time finishing with 22 points. Maggie Morrison connected on a trip of triples en route to 11 points.
Shereesha Richards topped Albany with 23 points while Imani Tate finished with 11. Heather Forster added nine points and Tiana-Jo Carter chipped in with eight.
The road gets much tougher for SU on Friday, as they will take on top-seeded South Carolina in Sioux Falls, SD with a slot in the Elite Eight up for grabs. The Gamecocks are 31-1 on the season and their lone loss this season came against perennial powerhouse Connecticut. South Carolina has won their two tourney games by a total of 62 points.