3 things Syracuse said ahead of NCAA Tournament 2nd-round matchup with South Dakota State

first_img Published on March 24, 2019 at 3:50 pm Contact Michael: mmcclear@syr.edu | @MikeJMcCleary No. 3 seed Syracuse (25-8, 11-5 Atlantic Coast) meets No. 6 seed South Dakota State (27-6, 15-1 Summit) in the second round of the NCAA tournament Monday. The Orange are coming off of a 70-49 win over its first round opponent, 14th-ranked Fordham, and will look to advance to the Portland Regional.Here are three things Syracuse said before Monday’s Round of 32 matchup.3’s a crowdSyracuse has long had an affinity for the 3-point jumper. The Orange have made the most 3-pointers in the ACC with 312 and they average just about 9.5 makes from beyond the arc per game. But South Dakota State has hit 258 3-pointers of its own and the Jackrabbits shoot at a 37.3 percent clip from beyond the arc compared to Syracuse’s 34.5 rate. “The way this game is moving you look at the maximum points you can get per possession,” SU head coach Quentin Hillsman said. “During our possessions, ideally, we would like to get a four-point possession by shooting a 3 and getting fouled, then making a free throw. At the end of the day, that’s where the game is evolving by shooting a lot of 3’s and being aggressive.”AdvertisementThis is placeholder textHillsman said SU relies more on the dribble-drive to get open 3-pointer’s where the Jackrabbits are more reliant on ball movement around the perimeter. Syracuse forward Miranda Drummond said its 3-point identity won’t change how SU approaches the game offensively, but point guard Kiara Lewis mentioned that Syracuse will change how they approach the game from a defensive standpoint: it will put a greater emphasis on stopping the Jackrabbits in transition.“In this game we’re going to shoot them and they are going to shoot them and we’ll see what happens.”CopycatLast year, Quentin Hillsman watched a few South Dakota State games and noticed something he liked. The Jackrabbits use a lot of downscreens, which helps them get open for shots in the perimeter as well as inside the arc. After he watched the Jackrabbits’ game Saturday, he addressed a question about the preparation for a “3-point shooting team” the same way he does with his own team: SDSU isn’t just that.“They are much more than that,” Hillsman said. “They have a lot of balance.” Saturday, Hillsman noticed South Dakota State scored well in the inside. Their leading scorer and the top-scorer in Summit League history Macy Miller scores from all different places on the court and only 12 of her 28 points against the Bobcats came from beyond the arc.Hillsman said their ability to “create advantages” is something that the Orange added to their own offense this season. “Obviously they are still here so it’s a very effective offense,” Hillsman said.Sizable matchupSDSU point guard, Miller, is much larger than the 5-foot-6 Tiana Mangakahia, who relies mainly on quickness to score and distribute. Though Syracuse was much more equipped than first round opponent Fordham in the height category, the Jackrabbits matchup well with SU.“They have some advantages in height so if they are their off the catch they can get their shots uncontested,” Hillsman said. “It’s always an advantage to have some more size and length but if we can be there on the catch we can make them put the ball on the floor.” Commentscenter_img Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more