Skip to main content
Syracuse's Emma Tyrrell.

Tyrrell, Ward Combine for 12 Points in Syracuse's 16-13 Win Over Loyola

March 27, 2024
Wyatt Miller
Rich Barnes

SYRACUSE, N.Y. — Syracuse's two high-octane Emmas — Emma Ward and Emma Tyrrell — settled into scoring patterns that the Loyola defense couldn’t disrupt Wednesday evening at the JMA Wireless Dome.

With No. 5 Syracuse up three midway through the third quarter, Tyrrell’s juke move from straight-ahead locked Logan Olmstead’s knees, and Tyrrell took advantage, dropping her crosse to thread a sidearm shot past Lauren Spence.

Tyrrell’s fifth goal of the game tied her season high, one she’d break not long after. This was eerily similar to how she scored two of her previous goals, as Tyrrell dominated her individual matchups. Ward — whose size and strength make her a matchup nightmare — was similarly stubborn in her approach. She took advantage of a lack of early slides by backing down defenders every opportunity she got.

All told, Ward and Tyrrell combined for 12 points in the Orange’s 16-13 win over No. 8 Loyola.

In the third quarter, Ward took her usual approach from X, placing her shoulder firmly through Olmstead to get topside around the crease. Instead of whipping around for a sidearm shot, as she’d done earlier, Ward threw a behind-the-back missile past a bamboozled Spence.

“When Emma Ward had the ball, they weren’t sliding early to her,” Syracuse head coach Kayla Treanor said. “I think it’s tough to slide early next to the crease because you’re in such a good feeding position, but that’s just kind of ‘pick your poison’ because she’s a really good passer as well.”

The most points Loyola had allowed through nine games was 14. Syracuse beat that by two scores, as an offensive onslaught buried a Greyhounds squad that had won all nine of its games by at least three goals coming in. Six points apiece for Ward (four goals, two assists) and Tyrrell (six goals) led the way in a game that started as a back-and-forth chess match but finished as a stress-free victory for the Orange.

Syracuse led 16-11 when Ward fed Sweitzer with 4:58 left, and Loyola didn’t tack on its final two scores until Anna Ruby scored with 2:57 left and Chase Boyle struck with 1:48 left.

The possession battle raged early on, but the Syracuse offense kept it in command. There was a stretch in the first half during which Boyle won seven-straight draws for Loyola, and Syracuse struggled to keep pace. Still, the Orange went into the half with a one-goal lead — despite trailing 11-6 in the draw circle.

Ward’s first shot of the game, which didn’t come until 12:47 in the second quarter, got Syracuse its first lead since early in the first. Curling around the crease from X, Ward beat Olmstead to get open right in front of the cage. She dropped it in to put Syracuse up 3-2, and she scored again less than two minutes later.

“Just being able to handle their physicality was really important going into the game,” Ward said. “It was one of our huge talking points. [I was] just making sure I was protecting my stick once I got inside.”

Shortly after, Tyrrell scored on a free-position shot, and then she gave a sneak peak at the same move she’d later put on Olmstead. Tyrrell’s quick feet gave her a step on Elisa Faklaris, and she dropped her alley dodge high over Spence’s head, putting the Orange up three.

The second half marked a shift at the X, but Syracuse’s offense overpowered Loyola from the second quarter on. That, along with a host of pressure-caused turnovers from the Greyhounds, is how the Orange kept it close in the first, and why the game busted open in the third.

In the end, Loyola won the circle 19-12, but it wasn’t enough, as the Greyhounds also turned the ball over 18 times to Syracuse’s 10.

“I think, in the first quarter, we got used to what the defense was giving us,” Tyrrell said. “We saw they were being very aggressive, doing certain slides with people.”

In the midst of that momentum shift, Syracuse stuck with the same offensive tactics. A little shake-and-bake from Tyrrell did the trick again, leaving two defenders in the dust as she screamed around a screen from Natalie Smith. With no one in her way, Tyrrell surged straight down Broadway and bounced it past Spence to give Syracuse a 9-8 lead that it wouldn’t relinquish.

Finally, Ward and Tyrrell combined for a score, as the former used her physicality to find a passing lane, hitting Tyrrell right in her raised stick. She cradled and shot in one fluid motion to score from the middle again, giving Syracuse a two-goal lead that would stretch to 13-8 before the fourth. Over the same time period that the Orange won five draws, they also scored five goals.

The fourth quarter brought flashbacks of the first, as Loyola went 7-for-8 in the circle, but Syracuse held its ground. Ward and Tyrrell each scored a goal in the final period, along with Sweitzer, who produced a hat trick, to close it out.

With just under nine minutes remaining, Ward collected an errant shot at X, beat her defender and then placed it low for the score. Syracuse’s lead, which had grown to five after that score, was never seriously threatened again. It was a wakeup call, albeit not a surprising one, for the previously undefeated Greyhounds.

“Syracuse knows how to score goals,” Loyola head coach Jen Adams said. “It doesn’t matter who they lose. They are ready to reload. It’s the kind of respect they garner from the country, and certainly from us going into this game. There’s never an off-year for Syracuse; I don’t think that exists.”