No. 23 SU Women Outscored North Carolina
Senior guards Tiana Mangakahia and Kiara Lewis led the fourth quarter offensive surge in #23 Syracuse's 88-76 win against North Carolina in the Carrier Dome on Tuesday. The pair combined for 19 of Syracuse's 27 fourth quarter points. Mangakahia had a hand in 24 of Syracuse's final 27 points, either scoring or making the assist for the Orange (7-1 overall, 4-1 Atlantic Coast Conference).
"I am just really proud of our team's effort today," said head coach Quentin Hillsman. "They came out and competed in the last quarter and that's all about guts, heart, and playing hard. That's what we have to do to win games. I hope that we can continue to compete at this level."
North Carolina (7-5, 2-5) led 67-61 after three quarters. Lewis started the scoring in the fourth quarter, hitting a layup on a pass from Mangakahia. Then Mangakahia found Maeva Djaldi-Tabdi for another layup before Mangakahia hit back-to-back three-point field goals, the first after a Djaldi-Tabdi steal, to give the Orange a 71-69 lead. Syracuse did not relinquish the lead, outscoring the Tar Heels 17-7 the rest of the game. UNC center Janelle Bailey led the Tar Heels with 22 points. The victory avenged a mid-December Syracuse loss to the Tar Heels, the only blemish on SU's 7-1 record.
Mangakahia recorded her second consecutive double-double, finishing with 19 points, 13 assists, while Lewis added a team-high 23 points in 40 minutes. Syracuse had five players score in double figures for the second-straight game. Junior Emily Engstler had 11 points, 13 boards, freshman Kamilla Cardoso added 10 points, a career-high 16 rebounds and four blocks, and freshman Priscilla Williams added 11 points and nine rebounds. It was the first time since November 18, 2011 that three Orange players recorded a double-double in the same game.
Syracuse, which ranks fourth nationally in blocked shots, added 10 to the season total against the Tar Heels. Cardoso led the way with four.
Mangakahia moved into 18th on the Syracuse all-time scoring list with 1,198 points, passing Vaida Sipaviciute (1,180) and Connie Stough (1,195)
Cardoso posted her second consecutive double-double.
Engstler pulled down 13 rebounds, which is the most for her since she had 17 against Michigan State (12/20/2019). Her double-double was the 20th of her career.
Senior Digna Strautmane tied a career-high with five assists
The Orange play at #1 Louisville on Thursday, January 21 (9 pm, ESPN2). It will be the third of four games in an eight day stretch for Syracuse.