April 2, 2011
INDIANAPOLIS – Notre Dame sophomore guard Skylar Diggins (South Bend, Ind./Washington) has been selected to the 2011 State Farm Coaches’ All-America Team, it was announced Saturday by the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) in a press conference at the Westin Hotel in Indianapolis, site of this year’s NCAA Women’s Final Four.
Diggins is the third Fighting Irish women’s basketball player to be named to the prestigious 10-player squad, following in the footsteps of Ruth Riley in 2001 and Jacqueline Batteast in 2005. In an ironic twist, Diggins received her State Farm Coaches’ All-America Team plaque in the same hotel ballroom that Batteast (also a South Bend Washington High School alum) earned her award six years earlier.
Diggins’ teammates, junior guard Natalie Novosel (Lexington, Ky./Lexington Catholic) and senior forward Devereaux Peters (Chicago, Ill./Fenwick) also were State Farm Coaches’ All-America Team finalists this season, with both receiving honorable mention All-America status. Notre Dame and fellow Final Four participant Stanford were the only two schools in the country to have three State Farm Coaches’ All-America Team finalists this year, with Diggins and Baylor’s Brittney Griner being the only two sophomores on the 2011 State Farm Coaches’ All-America Team.
An Associated Press third-team All-America selection, as well as a finalist for the State Farm Wade Trophy, John R. Wooden Award, Naismith Trophy and Nancy Lieberman Award, Diggins was named the Most Outstanding Player of the 2011 NCAA Dayton Regional after scoring a season-high 24 points in Notre Dame’s 73-59 win over fourth-ranked (and top-seeded) Tennessee in the regional championship game on March 28 in Dayton, Ohio. In addition to adding four assists and four steals, Diggins went over the 1,000-point mark for her career (now 26th all-time with 1,018 points), becoming just the second Fighting Irish women’s basketball player to reach that milestone before the end of her sophomore season. Beth Morgan was the first to do so, finishing with exactly 1,000 points after two years at Notre Dame.
Diggins currently ranks second on the team in scoring (14.4 ppg.), while leading the team in assists (4.8 apg.) and placing third in steals (1.9 spg.). She also has scored in double figures 30 times, including eight 20-point outings, and has dished out at least five assists in 21 games, paced by a career-high 12 assists (most by a Notre Dame player in more than 11 years) in a 78-53 NCAA Sweet 16 victory over No. 21/20 Oklahoma last Saturday in Dayton.
No. 9/7 Notre Dame (30-7) will take the floor at Conseco Fieldhouse in Indianapolis in the NCAA Women’s Final Four for the third time at approximately 9:30 p.m. (ET) Sunday in the national semifinals against top-ranked Connecticut. All three Final Four games will be televised live to a national cable audience on ESPNHD and via the Internet at ESPN3.com, with the live radio broadcast available nationally via Westwood One, as well as throughout the Michiana area on Pulse FM (96.9/92.1) and on the official Notre Dame athletics web site, UND.com, with veteran broadcaster Bob Nagle on the call.
For more information on the Notre Dame women’s basketball program, sign up to follow the Fighting Irish women’s basketball Twitter pages (www.twitter.com/ndwbbsid or www.twitter.com/notredamewbb) or register for the Irish ALERT text-messaging system through the sidebar on the women’s basketball page at UND.com.
— ND —