March 6, 2015
Inside The Game: #2 Notre Dame 77, Miami 61 (ACC Championship Quarterfinals)
March 6, 2015 – Greensboro, North Carolina (Greensboro Coliseum)
It Was Over When: Freshman forward Kathryn Westbeld converted an old-fashioned three-point play with 1:22 remaining to give Notre Dame a 72-58 lead and turn back Miami’s last challenge that had pulled the Hurricanes within 11 points inside the final two minutes.
Game Ball Goes To: Sophomore forward Taya Reimer, who registered 13 points, five rebounds and a game-high three blocks, providing the missing link against a Miami squad she did not face during the regular season. Reimer scored five of Notre Dame’s first seven points and ended up knocking down six of 12 shots from the floor in 25 minutes of action.
Unsung Hero: In her first postseason game, Westbeld looked every bit the crafty veteran, scoring 10 points and adding four rebounds and two assists off the bench. The Kettering, Ohio, native was especially potent in the first half, scoring seven points and sinking all three of her field-goal attempts, including a three-pointer (her seventh of the season) en route to her ninth double-figure scoring game of the season, and first since Feb. 8 when she scored 12 points at Boston College.
Unofficial Play of the Game: With 9:05 left in the second half, senior guard Madison Cable drove the right baseline, but her contested layup rolled off the rim. However, freshman forward Brianna Turner went high to tip in the rebound while she was fouled — Turner’s free throw not only capped the three-point play, but punctuated an 8-0 run that gave Notre Dame a 63-47 lead and Miami wouldn’t get closer than 10 points the rest of the afternoon.
Stat Of The Game: Notre Dame advances to the conference tournament semifinals for the sixth consecutive season (and 19th time in 27 years), as well as the second time in as many seasons it has been a member of the Atlantic Coast Conference.
Additional Notes: Notre Dame is 22-7 (.759) as the higher seed in conference tournaments dating back to 1995-96, its inaugural season in the BIG EAST Conference … Notre Dame avenges one of its two losses this season by nearly the same score that Miami defeated the Fighting Irish in the regular season (78-63 on Jan. 8 in Coral Gables) … Notre Dame improves to 16-4 all-time against Miami, including a 2-0 record in the postseason (the Fighting Irish defeated the Hurricanes, 67-52 in the 2000 BIG EAST Tournament quarterfinals in Storrs, Connecticut) … Notre Dame is 33-6 (.846) all-time against Florida schools, including a 20-3 (.870) record away from home (road/neutral sites combined) — the Fighting Irish also have 13 of their last 14 games against teams from the Sunshine State … Notre Dame is 15-1 (.938) all-time when playing in the state of North Carolina, including a 6-0 record at neutral sites (4-0 at the Greensboro Coliseum) … the Fighting Irish have held their last 11 opponents to 63 points or fewer … including regular season and postseason tournament results (conference and NCAA), Notre Dame has won 73 of its last 77 games against conference opponents … the Fighting Irish had five double-figure scorers for the eighth time this season (8-0 record) … junior guard Jewell Loyd moved into seventh place on the Fighting Irish career scoring list with 1,774 points, passing Alicia Ratay (1,763 points from 1999-2003) … Turner posted her team-leading seventh double-double of the season (first since Feb. 5 against Virginia), fifth-most by a Fighting Irish rookie in program history and most since Jacqueline Batteast’s 11 double-doubles in 2001-02 … Cable set a new career high by going eight for eight from the free-throw line, while scoring in double digits for the career-best eighth time this season … Reimer has scored in double figures in her last four games, while her three blocks were one off her season and career high.
Up Next For The Fighting Irish: Notre Dame will square off with No. 16 (and fourth-seeded) Duke in the ACC Tournament semifinals at noon (ET) Saturday at the Greensboro Coliseum in Greensboro, North Carolina. The semifinal will be televised live on ESPNU, as well as ESPN3/WatchESPN (blackout rules may apply). In addition, radio coverage will be available in South Bend on Pulse FM (96.9/92.1) and free of charge worldwide online through the official Notre Dame athletics multimedia platform, WatchND (watchnd.tv).
— Chris Masters, Associate Athletic Media Relations Director