Niagara Gazette — SYRACUSE — Brittney Sykes scored 20 points and Isabella Slim had 17 to lead No. 23 Syracuse (10-1) to an 80-44 win over Niagara University (2-6) in women’s college basketball action at the Carrier Dome on Thursday night.
It was Niagara’s last non-conference road game of the 2013-14 campaign.
Sykes was 6 of 9 from the field and 8 for 8 from the foul line in her third straight game with at least 20 points. Shakeya Leary contributed 13 points for the Orange.
Val McQuade led Niagara with 11 points. Chanel Johnson led the team in rebounds with nine.
Syracuse opened the game with a 22-6 run. After Niagara and Syracuse both went 3-for-6 in the early stages of the first half, the Orange got going with a three-pointer followed by a perfect 4-for-4 from the free-throw line.
Even with Niagara shooting 3-for-6 from three-point range in the final six minutes of the first half, the Purple Eagles found themselves trailing 44-23 at halftime. They chipped away at the gap in the second half but were unable to catch up.
The Purple Eagles shot 27.1 percent from the field and had 27 turnovers, more than twice as many as Syracuse.
The Niagara women’s team returns to action on Saturday afternoon, hosting the University at Buffalo at the Gallagher Center. The opening tipoff is set for 1 p.m.