#21 Natalie Novosel
OVERVIEW: Nicknamed ‘Nasty’ by her high school teammates for her sharpshooting prowess, slick passing and playmaking abilities … multi-talented athletic wing who made significant impact for the Fighting Irish at both ends of the court … known for her impressive work ethic, ultra-competitive desire and quiet confidence … incredibly tough and durable player who did not miss a game in her career, starting final 78 contests … upon graduation, ranked among the top 10 on six Fighting Irish statistical charts — games played (2nd – 144), free throws made (2nd – 464), free throws attempted (2nd – 588), three-point percentage (5th – .392), points (9th – 1,569) and double-figure scoring games (9th – 79), while her 27-game streak of scoring in double digits (crossing from her junior to senior years) is second-longest in school history … offered exceptional leadership, fostering ‘never-say-die’ attitude that served her well with ability to rise up time and again in clutch situations … had a hand in five game-winning, go-ahead or game-tying baskets in the final 30 seconds of regulation or overtime during her career, most notably an offensive rebound and reverse layup putback with 4.6 seconds left in regulation of 2012 NCAA Women[apos]s Final Four semifinal against No. 3 Connecticut, forcing overtime where Fighting Irish prevailed for third time in four games against the Huskies in 2011-12 (and third victory over Connecticut in as many Final Four matchups) … after going 8-of-30 (.267) from three-point line in her first two seasons, shot 75-of-182 (.412) from distance in her final two seasons … worked her way up from supporting role as freshman and sophomore to take main stage, proving to be the model for hard work, dedication and development … blended perfectly in Notre Dame[apos]s motion and transition offenses with quickness, ballhandling and creative passing skills … possessed a scorer[apos]s mentality with mix of polished perimeter shooting and an unmatched knack for getting to the rim and drawing contact … size and agility also presented unique matchup challenge for defenders … on defense, aggressiveness and court vision made her major asset in traps and presses … was selected in first round of 2012 WNBA Draft with the No. 8 overall selection by the Washington Mystics, joining Devereaux Peters in giving Notre Dame multiple first-round WNBA picks in the same draft year for the first time.
SENIOR SEASON (2011-12): Matched her own school record (shared with many others) with 39 starts … led BIG EAST in three-point field goal percentage (.411; 10th-best single-season mark in school history) and ranked second in free throw percentage/57th in nation (career-high .829) … sixth in BIG EAST in scoring at career-high 15.2 points per game … scored in double figures in team high-tying 32 games … ranked second on team with 11 20-point games … also averaged career-high 4.1 rpg. … tallied 1,000th career point on a free throw in second half of win over Indiana State … scored 20 points against Hartford on near-perfect shooting (6-7 FG, 2-2 3FG, 6-6 FT) … had (then) career-high 28-point outburst (11-15 FT) with five rebounds at No. 1 Baylor in Preseason WNIT final … good for 17 points (11-14 FT) against USC … added 15 points vs. No. 7/6 Duke in the Junkanoo Jam title game, while also banking in the game-winner from the foul line at the buzzer to cap school-record tying 18-point second-half comeback by Irish … totaled 14 points against Penn … had 17 points (6-8 FG, 5-5 FT) at Creighton … chalked up 11 points in 11 minutes vs. Marquette … posted 17 points with five rebounds at No. 12 Purdue … scored team-high 23 points (7-13 FG, 8-8 FT) against No. 8/7 Kentucky … 12 points and three assists came in a home rout of Central Florida … had 11 points, including trio of triples vs. Longwood … 13 points and five rebounds at Mercer, followed by a 13-point output at Seton Hall … totaled 20 points, three assists, three steals and sank 10 of 11 free throw attempts (6-6 FT in overtime) during a home win over No. 2 Connecticut … filled the box score against No. 18/17 Georgetown with 21 points, seven rebounds, five assists, two steals and matched a career-best with two blocks … made 7-11 FG at Cincinnati (including first six of the game, along with 2-2 3FG and 5-5 FT) for game-high 21 points … hit 6-of-6 free throws and scored 10 points vs. Villanova … scored 15 points at St. John[apos]s … fired in a trio of three-pointers while going 8-for-12 from the field vs. No. RV/23 DePaul, finishing with a team-high 21 points while adding five assists … tallied 16 points and three steals vs. West Virginia despite being weakened by illness … scored career-high 32 points (9-16 FT, 12-12 FT) in Senior Day victory over South Florida … scored team-high 21 points with eight rebounds in win at No. 4 Connecticut … posted 16 points, seven rebounds and three assists in BIG EAST quarterfinal win over No. RV/23 DePaul … tallied game-high 18 points (career-high 4-4 3FG; only third time that had been achieved in tournament history) in BIG EAST semifinal win over No. 25 West Virginia … scored 12 points in NCAA Championship first-round win over Liberty … key catalyst in NCAA second-round victory over California with game-high 28 points and career-best nine rebounds — also converted 18 free throws (on 20 attempts), setting new NCAA tournament record (old mark was set in 1989) and tying school and Purcell Pavilion records for free throws made in a single game … led the team with 16 points in NCAA Raleigh Regional semifinal win over No. 21/25 St. Bonaventure … scored 14 points and brought down six rebounds in NCAA Raleigh Regional final victory over No. 5 Maryland … scored game-high 20 points to go along with seven rebounds and four assists in NCAA national semifinal victory over No. 3 Connecticut (offensive rebound and reverse layup with 4.6 seconds to go in regulation sent game to overtime).
JUNIOR SEASON (2010-11): Tied school record by starting all 39 games … led team in scoring (15.1 ppg), more than tripling her scoring average from the previous season (588 points compared to 390 points in first two years combined) … scored in double figures 33 times, second-highest total in school history … posted seven 20-point games (career high had been 19 points entering the season) … set school record with 183 free throws made, while 232 foul shots attempts were second-most in school history … also tops on team in three-point percentage (career-high .413) and second in steals (1.9 spg) … dropped in 11 points and swiped career-high seven steals in season opener against New Hampshire … chalked up 13 points, including 6-of-8 FT in 15 minutes against Morehead State … enjoyed solid night against No. 15 UCLA with 19 points in 39 minutes; hit two big shots in final 1:15 of regulation to give Fighting Irish four-point lead, as well as putback with 8.6 seconds left in first OT that nearly stood up as game-winner … in front of her hometown crowd, collected 21 points, eight rebounds and career-high two blocks at No. 9/10 Kentucky … averaged a team-high 18.3 ppg while going 18-of-22 from the charity stripe during the WBCA Classic en route to being named tournament MVP … back-to-back 20-point efforts against Wake Forest (23) and Butler (20) … stretched her streak of contests with 10+ points to eight games after tallying 12 points at No. 2/3 Baylor … tied for game-high honors with 16 points (6-12 FG) during home win over Purdue … contributed 11 points against Creighton … steadied the Irish against Valparaiso with a game-high 18 points on 6-of-7 shooting with four steals … made State Farm Holiday Hoops Classic All-Tournament Team after averaging 17.5 ppg. and shooting .667 from floor (10-15) in tourney … poured in 27 points (8-11 FG, 2-2 3FG, 9-9 FT) in win over Gonzaga … dropped in 14 points (10 in second half) and snagged seven boards at Marquette … had 16 points, five rebounds and five assists in tight home loss to No. 2 Connecticut; hit acrobatic go-ahead basket in lane with 30.3 seconds left that was poised to be game-winner …. mimicked her UConn performance with 12 points, five rebounds and five assists in the win over Louisville … netted 15 points (6-8 FT) at Pittsburgh … dropped in 19 points (6-8 FG, 2-2 3FG) vs. No. 16/17 Georgetown … made her presence known with 14 points and four steals against No. RV/23 St. John[apos]s … knocked down 11 points (5-5 FT) at Villanova … good for 13 points, seven boards and three steals in the win over No. RV/25 Syracuse … finished strong at South Florida with game-high 19 points (12 in second half), and also grabbed eight rebounds … had solid performance in win over Seton Hall, posting game-high 16 points (6-8 FG) for 10th consecutive double-digit scoring game … dropped in 18 points (5-10 FG) at No. 2 Connecticut .. netted game-high 22 points (7-13 FG, 8-8 FT) and snatched seven rebounds in victory at No. 19/18 West Virginia … added 11 points and three steals in home finale against Cincinnati … scored 17 points (11 in second half) while registering seven rebounds and two steals at No. 12/11 DePaul; assisted on Devereaux Peters[apos] go-ahead layup with 30 seconds left … netted 17 points (8-8 FT), five rebounds and three steals in the BIG EAST final against No. 1 Connecticut … logged 20 points, four rebounds and four assists in NCAA first-round win at Utah (had 20 points combined in first four NCAA postseason games) … shared team-high scoring honors with 17 points in NCAA second-round victory over Temple; also made all three of her three-point attempts, tying school[apos]s NCAA tournament record … had 15 points and seven rebounds in NCAA Sweet 16 victory over No. 21/20 Oklahoma … made big impact in NCAA Elite Eight win over No. 4 Tennessee with 17 points, four rebounds and five assists … helped steer Irish past No. 1 Connecticut in NCAA Final Four with 22 points, including clutch three-pointer with 7:38 left that capped critical second-half run … dodged foul trouble in NCAA national championship game against No. 7/8 Texas A&M, scoring 14 points.
SOPHOMORE SEASON (2009-10): Appeared in all 35 games, making the first four starts of her career … averaged 5.0 points, 2.2 rebounds per game … ranked fourth on team in steals (47; 1.34 spg.) … had one ‘5-5-5’ game … made first career start in season opener vs. Arkansas-Pine Bluff, tallying 10 points, career-high six assists and four steals … tossed in eight points and added five steals in win over Iona … chalked up eight points off the bench in win over No. 20/17 Oklahoma at Paradise Jam … played season-high 32 minutes vs. Eastern Michigan, tying (then) career best with eight rebounds, while adding seven points and five assists (her first career ‘5-5-5’ game) … returned to double digits in scoring column vs. IPFW (10 points), along with six rebounds and four assists … notched season-high 12 points, plus four assists and three steals against Valparaiso … had eight points (6-6 FT) and four steals against Charlotte … added eight points and three steals at UCF … had productive BIG EAST opener vs. Villanova with six points and two steals … matched season high with 12 points (5-7 FG, 1-1 3FG) against South Florida, including seven in 19-3 second-half run … made impact at defensive end of court at Louisville, fueling 16-4 run to end first half with three points and a steal … important contributor in win over No. 16/11 West Virginia with eight points (3-4 FG), including four in game-changing 16-3 second-half run … ignited Notre Dame attack against Providence with season-high-tying 12 points (4-7 FG), game-high five assists and four rebounds in 20 minutes … provided spark off bench vs. Pittsburgh with six points (3-4 FG) and three assists … made most of her minutes in win over DePaul with eight points (4-6 FG) and three assists … solid contributor in 15 minutes at Seton Hall with six points (2-3 FG) and four rebounds … had career-high six assists and added four steals in BIG EAST second-round win over Louisville … turned in perfect shooting day in NCAA first-round win over Cleveland State, finishing with seven points (2-2 FG, 1-1 3FG, 2-2 FT), four rebounds and three assists … provided tough defense off the bench that helped fuel rally from early 10-point deficit in NCAA second-round victory over Vermont; finished with six points and three rebounds in 13 minutes … had four points (4-4 FT) in NCAA Sweet 16 game against Oklahoma, including two free throws, one rebound and one assist during 10-1 second-half run that gave Fighting Irish the lead.
FRESHMAN SEASON (2008-09): Played in all 31 games, averaging 6.9 points and 2.9 rebounds per game … second on team with 45 steals (1.5 spg.), while .493 field goal percentage was tops among everyday players … in BIG EAST play, ranked 10th in league with 1.8 steals per game … made college debut in State Farm Tip-Off Classic at No. 24/22 LSU, playing 17 minutes and notching two points and two rebounds … tallied six points and season-high four assists vs. Evansville … tossed in seven points at Boston College … added seven points (5-6 FT) and four rebounds against Georgia Southern …led the way to victory at Eastern Michigan with game-high 18 points, eight rebounds and four assists in 33 minutes … shared game-high scoring honors against Loyola-Chicago with 13 points, while adding three assists and three steals …posted second consecutive double-figure scoring game at Charlotte, coming off bench to notch 12 points and four steals … registered first perfect shooting game of her career in BIG EAST debut at Seton Hall, dodging foul trouble to score eight points (3-3 FG, 2-2 FT) in 17 minutes … chalked up 18 points and seven rebounds in 22 minutes at DePaul … collected 12 points against Georgetown … credited with 10 points, four rebounds and four steals at Marquette … paced Irish against Rutgers with season-best 19 points …tallied eight points and four rebounds at No. 22/24 Pittsburgh …sparkled off the bench against No. 10/12 Louisville with 17 points, season-high-tying four assists and four steals; scored nine points during 12-2 second-half run that put Irish in position to win down the stretch … notched six points and season-high five steals at Providence … had nearly perfect shooting day in BIG EAST tournament debut vs. St. John[apos]s, scoring 15 points (6-7 FG, 3-3 FT) in second-round win.
HIGH SCHOOL: Logged career averages of 14.0 ppg., 6.8 rpg., 3.7 spg., and 2.8 apg. at Lexington Catholic High School in Lexington, Ky. … helped pace Knights to outstanding 130-11 (.922) record during her final four years on the LCHS varsity (began playing on varsity as eighth-grader) for coaches Greg Todd and Jeff Hans … led team to state championships in 2005 and 2006 … ranked 32nd in nation by All-Star Girls Report … ranked 43rd in nation/four-star player (13th among guards) by ESPN Hoopgurlz … ranked 47th in nation by Blue Star Basketball … ranked 71st in nation (11th among off-guards) by Dan Olson Collegiate Girls Basketball Report … two-time Street & Smith[apos]s preseason honorable mention All-American … one of top three vote-getters for 2008 Kentucky Miss Basketball … three-time all-state selection (unanimous first team pick in 2008; top vote-getter in balloting by Lexington Herald-Leader) … four-time all-city pick … MVP of 2006 Kentucky 11th Region Tournament, 2006 Fifth Third Bank Kentucky Holiday Classic and 2007 Lexington Catholic Holiday Classic … averaged 19.9 ppg. and 9.1 rpg. as a senior, sparking team to 29-5 record and berth in regional title game for fourth consecutive season … selected to try out for 2008 Kentucky All-Star Team, but opted to forgo selection in order to allow minor knee injury to heal completely and prepare for summer classes at Notre Dame … as junior in 2006-07, averaged 17.9 ppg., 8.5 rpg., 4.4 apg., 3.8 spg., .583 FG% (13th in state), .787 FT% (20th in state) while team compiled 30-4 record before being upset in regional title game … as sophomore in 2005-06, averaged 12.4 points and 6.1 rebounds per game and helped team to 35-1 record with No. 3 ranking in USA Today Super 25 poll (highest ever for a Kentucky school) … team posted 36-1 record in 2004-05 and was ranked as high as sixth in USA Today Super 25 poll … ranks fourth in school history for career points (2,103) and one of five players in LCHS history with 2,000 points and 1,000 rebounds (1,021 boards) in career … also holds school record with 561 steals … also played for high-powered Tennessee Flight Silver AAU squad that won a pair of titles in summer of 2007 — prestigious End of the Trail tournament in Oregon City, Ore., (Novosel canned two free throws with six seconds left to seal semifinal win), and Midwest Showdown in Mason, Ohio … AAU squad also tied for third at Boo Williams Invitational.
INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION: Made USA Basketball debut in summer of 2011 with USA World University Games Team (joined by Notre Dame teammates Skylar Diggins and Devereaux Peters), helping the American side to a 6-0 record and the gold medal at World University Games in Shenzhen, China … was one of the ‘glue’ players for the United States, starting all six games and doing a bit of everything, winding up with 4.5 points, 3.3 rebounds and 1.6 steals per game, the latter total ranking fourth on the team.
PERSONAL DATA: Last name pronounced KNOW-vuh-sell … parents are Jaine and Nick Novosel … one of three children, all of whom have played college basketball … older sister, Shannon played at University of Evansville from 2005-09, while twin brother, Nathan played at NCAA Division III University of Rochester (N.Y.) from 2008-12 … first Notre Dame women[apos]s basketball player ever to come from state of Kentucky … matriculated from same high school as former Fighting Irish men[apos]s basketball standout David Graves (1999-2002) … graduated in May 2012 from Notre Dame[apos]s College of Arts and Letters with her bachelor[apos]s degree in anthropology … earned certificate of merit for participation in Notre Dame[apos]s Rosenthal Leadership Academy in 2010-11 … among a storied collection of former Fighting Irish players who wore No. 21 including all-time scoring leader (and current Notre Dame associate coach) Beth Morgan (Cunningham) and two-time All-America forward Jacqueline Batteast … in addition to domestic pro career with the WNBA[apos]s Washington Mystics, spending 2012-13 winter season playing professionally in Romania.
2012: WNBA First-Round Draft Pick (eighth overall – Washington Mystics) … State Farm Coaches[apos] All-America Team (honorable mention) … Associated Press All-America Team (honorable mention) … Lowe[apos]s Senior CLASS Award All-America Team … First-Team All-BIG EAST … Junkanoo Jam Most Valuable Player … NCAA Raleigh Regional All-Tournament Team … Preseason WNIT All-Tournament Team … BIG EAST Player of the Week (Dec. 19) … BIG EAST All-Academic Team.
2011: State Farm Coaches[apos] All-America Team (honorable mention) … BIG EAST Most Improved Player … First-Team All-BIG EAST … WBCA Classic Most Valuable Player … NCAA Dayton Regional All-Tournament Team … BIG EAST Championship All-Tournament Team … State Farm Holiday Hoops Classic All-Tournament Team.
2009: BIG EAST All-Freshman Team … BIG EAST Freshman of the Week (Dec. 29, Jan. 12).
Novosel[apos]s Career Statistics
Novosel in the BIG EAST Conference