April 26, 2013

Orange Rolls Over Loyola Behind Treanor, Murray

by Clare Lochary | LaxMagazine.com | Twitter | Live Blog Replay

Freshman Kayla Treanor (above) scored five goals and Alyssa Murray had three goals and five assists in Syracuse's 19-9 win over Loyola, the Orange's third straight victory since losing star Michelle Tumolo to a season-ending ACL injury.

Syracuse has a few numbers it likes to hit each game — 50 percent on shooting and 50 percent on saves and a really intense first five minutes. The Orange nailed all three in its 19-9 win over Loyola, led by freshman Kayla Treanor who tied a career-high with five goals.

"I thought our team came in pretty focused and played very well, especially in the first five minutes of the game, which is something we always talk about, being ready to play and matching intensity and executing in the first five minutes," Syracuse coach Gary Gait said.

Syracuse didn't actually score in the first five minutes, but they did dominate possession until Treanor ripped an unassisted shot at 23:59, which kicked off an 8-1 run. Four of her five goals came in the first half.

"There's a lot that's happened," Treanor said. "I need to step up more, and produce more goals and just be a bigger impact for our team."

The Orange scored on each of its first nine shots, and overall had 19 goals on 28 shots. That's a comforting number for a team that lost senior attacker Michelle Tumolo to a season-ending ACL injury on April 16.

"Kayla made a statement that she's here to score goals and step up and take up some slack for Michelle," Gait said.

Besides Treanor, junior attacker Alyssa Murray contributed three goals and five assists, and sophomore midfielder Kailah Kempney added three goals and one assist.

"I thought we had a pretty solid game plan in place and it felt short a couple times," Loyola coach Jen Adams said. "Treanor was obviously finding her way to net, and filling the shoes of Tumolo and doing a phenomenal job."

Overall, nine different players scored in the win over Loyola, in a victory that gave the Orange a 7-0 record in the Big East conference. Getting goals from a variety of places is key for a team with its eye on a conference title.

"We had some late goals by Amy Cross and Brenna Rainone. They're little plays but they just push us that much [more] forward," Murray said. "A goal in this game could translate to three goals in the playoffs, which is something we need to have."

The Orange's goalie platoon, with starter Kelsey Richardson (four saves) and second-half substitute Alyssa Costantino (six saves), performed well. They combined to stop 10 of 19 of Loyola's shots on goal. Loyola sophomore midfielder Taryn VanThof led the Greyhounds with three goals and five draw controls.

Syracuse's early run was fueled by its domination of the draw in the first half. The Orange won 11 of 17 attempts in the first half, largely thanks to Kempney (three draw controls) and senior defender Becca Block (six draw controls). Block was named to the list of 25 Tewaaraton Award nominees on Friday. Her play between the lines was crucial to the win, and she even added a late goal when no Loyola defenders slid to her on a fast break. It was only her fourth goal of the season, but Block leads the team in three key defensive stats: ground balls, caused turnovers and draw controls.

"I think she understands the game much better at this point as a senior," Gait said. "I think it's slowed down for her. She's been an outstanding player all year long, especially again tonight."

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