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Donahue sparks Syracuse with 7 points in 21-13 victory over Canisius

first_img Facebook Twitter Google+ With three minutes left in the game, Syracuse attack Riley Donahue stood on the sideline in the middle of a group of teammates, laughing and clapping to a beat.The Orange sideline didn’t have much life throughout the game, but as SU wrapped up the win Donahue was providing the energy on the sideline.After a quick start, the No. 3 Orange flat-lined and allowed Canisius to bring the game within three goals at the end of the first half. But in the second, Donahue led a resurgence of energy for the Orange, scoring two goals and adding three assists. The freshman finished with seven points as SU (2-0) defeated Canisius (0-1), 21-13, in the Carrier Dome on Saturday night.“I thought Riley played outstanding,” SU head coach Gary Gait said. “… In the second half she did a much better job of seeing the field, seeing those opportunities and making some great plays and putting the ball in the net when she had the chance.”In the first 12 minutes of the game Donahue was everywhere, still riding a high from playing her first collegiate game just a few hours earlier against Denver. She scored twice, forced two turnovers and picked up a ground ball.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textHer first goal of the game, and her career, came when she cut in front of the net and buried a pass from attack Halle Majorana in the back of the net, just a minute and a half into the game.At the 18-minute mark, Donahue beat a defender in front of the goal and was taken down from behind. On the ensuing free position, she took a few strides forward before slotting one to the left of Canisius goalie Kayla Scully, at about shoulder height.“She was ready to play,” SU attack Kayla Treanor said. “She came in ready to go.”Canisius was focusing its defense on Treanor, Syracuse’s leading scorer last year, which created chances and space for Donahue. Often, Donahue would be wide open to receive a clearing pass from a midfielder and put SU on the attack.But for the rest of the half, Donahue was nowhere to be found. She was still getting opportunities, but was playing too tentatively, Gait said. The team was wearing out as a result of the doubleheader — the Orange beat No. 18 Denver 18-10 earlier Saturday afternoon — both mentally and physically.In the second half, that changed and in a span of six minutes, Donahue contributed to five SU goals, assisting on three and scoring the next two.“It just clicked at that point just to keep going and push through it,” Donahue said.At the 19:35 point, she found Syracuse attack Kelly Cross for a score, before feeding attack Kailah Kempney 14 seconds later for another goal.Donahue’s third goal of the night came when she saw open space in front of the net and capitalized on a pass from SU midfielder Loren Ziegler.“I think that it was my team that helped me, too, because they all moved the ball really well and just we worked really well together,” Donahue said.The fourth goal and the exclamation point on her night resulted from another free-position attempt and started the transition of many of the starters to the bench.“You know that second half she just gave it 100 percent,” Gait said, “and saw it a little bit better and recognized it and like I said made plays: assists, goals. She did a nice job.” Comments Published on February 8, 2015 at 12:06 am Contact Jon: [email protected] | @jmettuslast_img

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