STONY BROOK, N.Y. (AP) — Tiana Mangakahia’s return from a battle with breast cancer was impressive as she had 16 points, seven rebounds, four steals and three assists to lead No. 23 Syracuse past Stony Brook 50-39 on Sunday.
She grabbed the rebound when Stony Brook misfired on its first possession, drove down the court and found Amaya Finklea-Guity for the first points of the game. A few minutes later she made a steal and drove down the court to make it 4-0.
Mangakahia, who missed all of last season after undergoing chemotherapy and then a double mastectomy in November, had not played a competitive game in 615 days.
After the game she told Syracuse.com, “I was very emotional and I couldn’t believe this day was here.”
Mangakahia went 4 of 13 from the field but 7 of 8 from the foul line. She also had five turnovers.
She played 36 minutes and prior to the game pronounced herself at 85%.
She is Syracuse’s all-time assist leader with 591 and led the nation with 9.8 assists per game in 2017-18.
The Orange (1-0) only shot 29% in their season opener, going 2 of 18 from 3-point range, and had 21 turnovers. However, they held the Seawolves (0-2) to 21% shooting, 3 of 24 behind the arc, and forced 22 turnovers.
Kamilla Cardoso, a 6-foot-7 freshman who was one of the most prized recruit in the country, added 14 points for Syracuse.
Nairimar Vargas-Reyes led Stony Brook with 11 points.
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