Syracuse Women’s Basketball Surges to Tackle UAlbany 87-64
By Jesse Cook | @JesseCookTV
CitrusTV Women’s Basketball Reporter
Staying in the moment and focusing on each individual play carried the Syracuse Women’s Basketball Team to an 87-64 victory over UAlbany Tuesday morning.
Two members of the Orange recorded season-highs in points en route to the win. Guard Georgia Woolley finished with 12 points, and forward Asia Strong tied her best with 18.
Woolley battled a leg injury early in the season and has been on the path to recovery through all nine games in which she has played. The Australia-native said she feels like she is finally returning to prime form. She said, “It feels good just getting my groove back and trusting my teammates and taking the shots that I’m supposed to take.”
Syracuse Head Coach Felisha Legette-Jack coached Woolley in her rookie season last year at Buffalo. The S.U. play caller said that Woolley is not taking any days off on her road back. She said, “She’s getting healthier, and she’s getting her wind back, and I see her with them, and we worked so hard to get her in shape, don’t take these five days and blow it. It takes two days to get out of shape, and my hope is that she’s gonna go hang out with some that played with her at Buffalo, and I know for a fact that they’re gonna go work out, so the best of Georgia is yet to come — you guys haven’t seen her play her best basketball, yet.”
Before Tuesday’s bout, Woolley best scoring output came in S.U’s 60-58 road victory over Yale on Sunday, Dec. 4. The sophomore put up 11 points, but six of them came from the free throw line. Against UAlbany, Woolley scored 12 with every single bucket coming from the field, including a pair of three-pointers.
Asia Strong’s best game came on the road against Purdue on Wednesday, Nov. 30 in a 87-78 loss. The graduate student nabbed a double-double with 18 points and 10 rebounds, not to mention a solid foursome of three-point makes.
In Tuesday’s win, Strong nailed another 18-point performance, as well as six boards. She said that her mentality has changed over the course of the season. She said, “I just changed my mindset. I’m in a new conference, and we’re finna go crazy.”
The South Bend-native continued that she feels like she can trust her teammates to a greater degree, as well. Strong said, “Locking in on defense and rebounding, boxing out and just letting the offense come to me and, you know, just talking to my teammates and being a good teammate.”
That idea of playing like the ideal teammate plays a lot into what Coach Legette-Jack said her vision for the team entails. She said, “I think that we’re realizing that this is just my sister. You know, before it was like 13 individual players, and we had to pull them together fast, but they’re realizing now that we’re all in the foxhole together, and the team on the other side is the one we’ve got to be worried about, not each other.”
The family mentality preached by the head coach takes a literal turn this week as the players have over a week off to return to their families to enjoy winter break. Next up for the Cuse is a road bout at Louisville on Thursday, Dec. 29 with a 7:00 p.m. tipoff.