SU women’s basketball bounces back with win over Florida State

SU women bounces back with win over Florida State

Tiana Mangakahia led the Orange to a victory after tying her career-high with 44 points.
Published: February 28, 2019

In a game with 18 ties and 11 lead changes, the Syracuse Women’s Basketball team came back with a win over No. 22 Florida State, 94-88 due to a 44-point effort from SU point guard Tiana Mangakahia.

Syracuse (21-7, 10-5) had a 90-87 lead with 23 seconds left in the game, giving Florida State (21-7, 9-6) enough time to tie the game with a three-point shot. But a failed pass by FSU’s Nausia Woolfolk resulted in a turnover and gave the Orange the ball again. Tiana Mangakahia connected on four free throws in the final 17 seconds, securing the victory for Syracuse.

A back-and-forth game kept the Orange and the Seminoles on their toes for 40 minutes, as each team struggled to outdo the other. At halftime, Syracuse had a mere one-point lead, 40-39, over the ‘Noles. A 27-21 run from Syracuse would put the Orange up seven at the end of the third quarter, giving Syracuse some insurance going into the too-close-for-comfort fourth quarter.

With 4:17 left in the game, Woolfolk hit a jumper to put the teams at 79 apiece. Mangakahia came back with a layup to put Syracuse up a bucket, but again Woolfolk scored to tie the teams.

The final 4:17 of the game saw four ties, although the Seminoles never took the lead. In the last 41 seconds, Mangakahia drained six shots from the foul line while Florida State’s Nicki Ekhomu hit just one.

Mangakahia shot a stunning 80 percent from the field. Digna Strautmane and Kiara Lewis each contributed 10 points for the Orange. FSU’s Woolfolk finished with a team-high 29 points, followed by Kiah Gillespie with 20.

Syracuse shot 62 percent overall, while the Seminoles hit 48 percent of their shots. Free throws were key for the Orange, as they hit 18-20. Florida State outrebounded Syracuse, 29-27, and scored 16 second-chance points compared to the Orange’s six, but with 23 bench points and 52 points in the paint, Syracuse was able to take control of the game.

Syracuse headed into the game tied for fifth in the ACC with Florida State.

Syracuse will rematch the Boston College Eagles at 2 p.m. on Sunday in Chestnut Hill to finish out its season. In its Feb. 10 matchup against the Eagles, Syracuse won by a large margin, 96-69.