Nov. 21, 2015
By Chris Masters
Inside The Game: #3 Notre Dame 75, South Dakota State 64
Nov. 21, 2015 – Brookings, South Dakota (Frost Arena)
It Was Over When: Junior guard Lindsay Allen worked a picture-perfect pick-and-roll with sophomore forward Brianna Turner, finding the ACC Preseason Player of the Year for a layup with 2:24 remaining to give Notre Dame a 73-60 lead and seal the victory after South Dakota State had made one final push and trimmed the margin to eight points slightly more than a minute earlier.
Game Ball Goes To: Junior forward Taya Reimer, who came off the bench and recorded eight points, eight rebounds and two blocks in her second game back after missing the preseason and first regular season game with a sore Achilles. Reimer’s tip-in with 4:17 to play helped the Fighting Irish keep the scrappy Jackrabbits at bay down the stretch.
Unsung Hero: Sophomore guard Mychal Johnson made the most of her 17 minutes of court time on Saturday, collecting four points, three assists and two steals. Johnson was pressed into service when Allen was saddled with her second foul with 4:44 remaining in the first quarter, sending the preseason all-ACC pick and All-America candidate to the bench for the balance of the first half.
Unofficial Play of the Game: With 1:22 left in the first half, senior guard Hannah Huffman came up with a steal on SDSU’s Madison Guebert, then raced up court before finding senior guard/co-captain Michaela Mabrey lurking on the right wing. Mabrey fired up a 23-footer that found nothing but nylon, giving Notre Dame a 34-27 lead and capping a 10-1 run that put the Fighting Irish ahead for good.
Stat Of The Game: Saturday’s attendance of 5,532 was the largest for a regular season game at South Dakota State’s Frost Arena, and the third-largest for any game in the facility’s history. What’s more, Notre Dame was the highest-ranked NCAA Division I team ever to play at Frost Arena.
Additional Notes: Notre Dame was playing in the state of South Dakota for just the second time in the program’s 39-year history, and first since Jan. 14, 1980 (in the program’s last season as a Division III squad), when the Fighting Irish dropped a 76-61 decision to South Dakota in Vermillion, South Dakota ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢’Â¬Â¦ Notre Dame has won 28 of its last 29 games in the month of November and is 91-14 (.867) in November games since 1995-96 (when the Fighting Irish joined the BIG EAST Conference) ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢’Â¬Â¦ Notre Dame has won 46 of its last 47 regular season road games (and 53 of 59) ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢’Â¬Â¦ the Fighting Irish have allowed 157 points this year (52.3 ppg.), the third-fewest three-game total to begin a season in program history, topped only by the 1981-82 squad (123 points) and the 2011-12 club (138 points) ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢’Â¬Â¦ Notre Dame improves to 2-0 all-time against South Dakota State and 9-2 (.818) all-time against current Summit League schools ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢’Â¬Â¦ Turner posted her eighth career 20-point game and second of the season ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢’Â¬Â¦ Westbeld scored in double figures nine times as a freshman, but already has done so in two of three games this season ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢’Â¬Â¦ Cable has scored in double figures in three consecutive games for the first time in her career ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢’Â¬Â¦ Notre Dame had a season-low 12 turnovers, while forcing South Dakota State into 15 turnovers (the Jackrabbits came into the game leading the nation with just 7.0 turnovers per game).
Up Next For The Fighting Irish: It’s a quick turnaround for Notre Dame, as the Fighting Irish make the trip down the Indiana Toll Road Monday night for an 8 p.m. ET (7 p.m. CT) game against in-state foe Valparaiso at the Athletics-Recreation Center. The game will be televised live on ESPN3, as well as the WatchESPN app, while radio coverage will be available in South Bend on Pulse FM (96.9/92.1) and free of charge around the world through the official Notre Dame athletics online multimedia platform, WatchND (watchnd.tv).
– ND –
Chris Masters, associate athletics communications director at the University of Notre Dame, has been part of the Fighting Irish athletics communications team since 2001 and coordinates all media efforts for the Notre Dame women’s basketball and women’s golf programs. A native of San Francisco, California, Masters is a 1996 graduate of Ohio Wesleyan University, earned his master’s degree from Kansas State University in 1998, and currently serves on the Board of Directors for the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA).