WBB : Orange cruises through WNIT despite extended time on road

first_img Comments Facebook Twitter Google+ It worked out exactly how Quentin Hillsman wanted it to.After the Syracuse head coach learned his team would be playing in the Women’s National Invitation Tournament on March 12, Hillsman hoped the Orange would play all of its games on the road, away from the distractions of home.‘I was hoping that it wouldn’t backfire on us because I knew that we could go out and it could go either way,’ Hillsman said, ‘but to their credit they embraced it, and I think that being on the road has made us a stronger basketball team.’The Orange (22-14) began its road journey in the first round of the WNIT in Hartford, Conn., and the trip has worked out perfectly thus far for Hillsman and his players. SU has survived four elimination games in nine days to advance to the WNIT semifinals, in which it will take on James Madison (28-7) in Harrisonburg, Va., at 7 p.m. Wednesday.It was the first time in 22 years Syracuse captured four consecutive road victories, dating back to the 1990-91 season.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textThe Orange opened the tournament with a 59-42 win at Hartford on March 16. Three days later, Syracuse trounced Drexel 65-43 and emerged victorious again in Philadelphia last Thursday with an 82-68 win over Temple.Syracuse’s players and staff then traveled to Toledo, Ohio, last Friday. They had less than a day to prepare for their matchup with the Rockets.‘It was just more so us being mentally focused and coach Q just letting us know this is a business,’ forward Iasia Hemingway said. ”You know we’re going to be traveling a lot, but just stay focused, and I know you’re all tired, but don’t give up because we are a good team and we’re playing well and we don’t want to come up short.”Trailing by five with 2:10 remaining in the second half, a newfound unity and resiliency surfaced to carry the Orange to victory. First, Syracuse point guard Rachel Coffey hit a fadeaway 3-pointer with 2.4 seconds left to send the game into overtime.And in the extra session, with SU’s two centers off the court due to foul trouble, reserve forward Troya Berry nailed what proved to be the game-winning free throw.‘With Rachel hitting that big shot, we were like, ‘Let’s just take this home,” Hemingway said. ‘That 3 was meant for a reason. It was meant for us to win for a reason and everything happens for a reason, so fortunately we got the win.’The road trip also led to a change in Hillsman’s coaching style. The SU head coach said he has learned to not overanalyze certain situations and to loosen the reins on his players to a degree, allowing them ‘to do their thing’ and to save their legs.The road also enabled the coaches to break down film with the players without any disturbance, as they had nowhere else to be.After Saturday’s win over Toledo, Syracuse returned home before getting ready to leave for Virginia.Now, only two games stand in the path of the Orange capturing the WNIT crown.‘When you’re out for that long period of time and you’re in the environments that we’ve been in, you have to band together and lean on each other,’ Hillsman said. ‘Secondly, because they’re playing so well they have the confidence in each other.’The next chapter of Syracuse’s tournament run leads the Orange to the JMU Convocation Center, a hostile environment that Hillsman deemed ‘eerie’ because the band sits right over the court.But if SU has proven anything in the WNIT, it’s that it embraces challenges. If the Orange can stretch its road winning streak to five, just one obstacle stands in its way of earning the tournament title.‘We just know that we need to come out strong and do the same things that we do at home,’ SU guard Carmen Tyson-Thomas said. ‘We’re not reluctant to be playing on the road at all, so we’re just looking forward to it.’adtredin@syr.educenter_img Published on March 27, 2012 at 12:00 pmlast_img read more

Outgoing USCAA Board of Governors president named USC Trustee

first_imgCancer researcher and the soon to be former president of the Alumni Association Board of Governors Amy Ross was elected to the Board of Trustees on Wednesday.A first generation college student, Ross attended California State University, Northridge before receiving her Ph.D. in experimental pathology from the Keck School of Medicine in 1986.Following her graduation from Keck, Ross became a technician in the pathology department at Keck. She then went on to become a senior vice president at Nexell Therapeutics and served as a biologist at the California Institute of Technology.“Quite honestly, if it hadn’t been for the wonderful education I received at USC, I would not have had this career,” Ross told USC Trojan Family in 2014.In addition to her career in pathology, Ross has been a champion for LGBT rights at USC and in the outside community. Ross was one of the founding members of the USC Lambda LGBT Alumni Association in 1992, the university’s first alumni group of its kind, aimed at connecting and supporting LGBT students and alumni. Through the Lambda Alumni Association, Ross also endowed a scholarship in 2000, now called the Amy Ross Scholarship in LGBT Health Studies, intended for students who have shown a commitment to LGBT health and wellness.During her time as the president of the Alumni Association Board of Governors, Ross focused on contributing to the $6 billion Campaign for USC through scholarships. She also aimed to broaden the alumni network and reach out to other universities to compare ideas on how to improve the alumni experience.Ross is also a member of many other campus organizations, including the USC Trojan Society of Hospitals, Women of Troy and Town and Gown of USC.As a trustee, she plans to focus on aiding USC in the university’s efforts to improve its standing in academic and research communities.“USC has supported me throughout my career,” Ross told USC News. “I’m just paying a little of that back.”President C. L. Max Nikias said that Ross’ many years of dedication to the university will make her a valuable addition to the board of trustees.“Amy Ross has been an exceptional leader for the USC community and a passionate supporter of our Trojan Family,” Nikias told USC News. “Her expertise and tireless dedication to the university will be invaluable to me and our Board of Trustees, and I am certain USC will benefit tremendously from her singular ability to build relationships and strengthen connections among our community.”last_img read more