Coffey drains clutch 3-pointers in season-best performance in win over Rutgers

first_img Published on February 20, 2013 at 1:34 am Contact David: [email protected] | @DBWilson2 Syracuse clung to a double-digit lead late in the second half. But Rutgers wouldn’t go away. Every time the Orange scored, the Scarlet Knights answered on the other end.With less than a minute and a half remaining, Rachel Coffey dribbled around the perimeter, searching for an open shot. Eventually, she found enough space and drained a 3-pointer. RU answered, but Coffey wasn’t done. Elashier Hall found the junior wide open in the right corner on the next possession. Another 3.“Obviously, Rachel Coffey was tremendous,” SU head coach Quentin Hillsman said. “She was tremendous. She made some huge shots in that second half.”The back-to-back 3s helped seal Syracuse’s 58-45 victory over Rutgers (14-11, 5-7 Big East), and highlighted an explosive second half that culminated with a season-high 17 points for Coffey.Though Coffey failed to tally even one assist – same was the case for starting point guard Cornelia Fondren – she was the Orange’s (22-3, 10-2) leading scorer at halftime, albeit with a measly five points on 1-of-5 shooting, and more than made up for her lack of execution as a distributor with her scoring output.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textThe first half was admittedly frustrating for Coffey. The turnovers piled up as entry pass after entry pass got knocked away and left her with four giveaways heading into the break. Her 3-pointers, with the exception of one that fell through, bricked and rimmed out. A 3-point heave in the final seconds of the first frame bounced out, and Carmen Tyson-Thomas’ follow missed as well. SU headed into halftime trailing 19-15 in a sloppy game.“First half, I was frustrated,” Coffey said. “I didn’t make any shots, so I knew I had to do something to come up big. I had no assists, so I had to do something, so I made shots.”Star center Kayla Alexander was relegated to the sidelines for all but five minutes of the first half due to foul trouble, and finished with just seven points on 2-of-8 shooting. Coffey accounted for a third of the team’s points in the opening frame, and kept Syracuse alive in a game that could have been lost.The overall offensive production wasn’t pretty. Coffey ended up the only player in double figures and the Orange shot just 26.6 percent from the field. But Coffey bailed SU out.Brittney Sykes sprinted down the court for a fast break just more than five minutes into the second half. Syracuse had a chance to take its first lead, but the guard missed the transition layup. Coffey, though, was there for the offensive rebound and putback to give the Orange its first lead of the game. To that point, Alexander had taken just one shot.“We have too many threats on our team. So I slack one day, someone else is going to pick it up the next day,” Alexander said. “Today it was Rachel, and that’s teamwork. There’s 14 of us, and any one of us can show up any given day.”Coffey’s putback was the only non-3-pointer she attempted. After nailing one in the first half, it took her until the 3:40 mark of the second to try another. Then she knocked down back-to-back 3s.She followed her two straight 3s with a miss, and didn’t shoot again. But by then the game was all but won for Syracuse.“I just try to play,” Coffey said. “When I’m open, I’m going to shoot it. Late clock, I’m going to shoot it. Every time I shoot it, I want to make it, so it’s not really any different.”The only blemish on Coffey’s strong second-half performance was the lack of assists. She turned the ball over once more in the final frame for a total of five, without even one helper.The Orange as a team finished with just seven assists compared to 17 turnovers, and its two point guards failed to register a single assist between them. But Hillsman can’t be too concerned. When asked if the dearth of Coffey’s assists is a concern, the head coach didn’t hesitate with an answer.“No,” he said, shortly. “We won.” Comments Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

Grossi chips in goal, assist in Syracuse’s tie with New Hampshire

first_img Published on October 11, 2014 at 9:06 pm Contact Liam: [email protected] Midway through the second period, freshman forward Stephanie Grossi stepped onto the ice for Syracuse during a line change.With both Syracuse and New Hampshire knotted at one, Grossi picked off a loose puck that a defender had attempted to clear in UNH’s zone. She swiftly fired off a shot that went past New Hampshire goaltender Vilma Vaattovaara’s glove and found the back of the net for a score.“I think the puck just had eyes,” SU head coach Paul Flanagan said. “The goalie just missed it. She was on her way down because of Steph’s quick release.”Grossi contributed on both of SU’s scoring plays and continued her strong play this season by netting one of the team’s two goals and collecting an assist on the other in Syracuse’s (1-1-2) 2-2 tie with New Hampshire (1-3-1) on Saturday afternoon at Tennity Ice Pavilion. The freshman also led the Orange with eight shots.Flanagan praised Grossi’s ability to make plays and her ability to keep the game simple. He said that her skill, awareness and smart play make a huge difference on the ice for the team.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textSU junior defender Nicole Renault took a pass from Grossi and slipped a shot past Vaattovaara just 93 seconds into the game.“I came out of the corner with the puck and Renault was open, so I slid it down to her,” Grossi said of her assist on the play. “She didn’t have much room, but she got through.”Renault said that Grossi did most of the work to create the team’s first score, threading a tight pass for the assist despite two UNH defenders being draped all over her.Grossi’s goal in the second period came after the Wildcats had answered Renault’s goal with one of their own to close out the first period. Grossi’s goal, one she called “lucky,” again gave the Orange the lead.Saturday afternoon marked only the fourth game of Grossi’s collegiate career, but that isn’t apparent based on her performance.Syracuse totaled 40 shots for the entirety of the contest and Grossi was responsible for a fifth of those. One of her eight shots was in the overtime period, in which SU only managed to shoot three times.“She was huge,” Renault said of Grossi. “You can’t even tell she’s a freshman out there.”In addition to leading the team in shots on Saturday, Grossi also tops the Orange with 22 shots on the season — eight higher than the next player, junior Melissa Piacentini, who led the team in goals last season.Grossi has shouldered some of the scoring load early in the season. Her goal on Saturday gives her two goals on the season, which leads Syracuse.Flanagan believes Grossi’s play Saturday afternoon was a bright spot for the Orange in a game after which he was disappointed. The team dominated territorially in the second period and the team didn’t bury enough of their scoring chances, Flanagan said.“I think some of our less-skilled players who try to make the game difficult should try to pay attention to Steph,” Flanagan said. “I think she’s a great role model as a player. She’s one of our top players right now.” Comments Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more