November 21, 1998

No. 11/19 Notre Dame (2-0) at No. 6/4 Duke (1-2)

Date: Saturday, November 21, 1998
Place: Joyce Center (11,417), Notre Dame, Ind.
Time: 7:30 p.m.
Radio: All Notre Dame games are broadcast on WHME-FM (103.1 in South Bend). Bob Nagle will provide play-by-play for the games.

Notre Dame Probable Starting Lineup

                                                       1998-99 StatisticsNo. Name                   Hometown        Pos.  Ht.   Cl.  PPG    RPG50  Kelley Siemon*         Edina, MN       F     6-2   So.   7.0   6.500  Ruth Riley*            Macy, IN        C     6-5   So.  11.5   4.512  Danielle Green**       Chicago, IL     G     5-8   Sr.  23.0   6.020  Sheila McMillen***     Rochester, IN   G     5-10  Sr.  12.5   3.033  Niele Ivey*            St. Louis, MO   G     5-8   Jr.  16.0   3.0

Off The Bench

 3  Ericka Haney           Toledo, OH      G/F   6-1   Fr.   4.5   4.011  Sherisha Hills         Tampa, FL       G     5-8   Fr.   7.5   2.032  Julie Henderson**      Ann Arbor, MI   F/C   6-3   Jr.   0.0   1.040  Diana Braendly**       Staten Is., NY  C     6-4   Sr.   3.0   3.041  Imani Dunbar*          San Angelo, TX  G     5-7   So.   0.0   0.044  Meaghan Leahy*         Wilbraham, MA   F     6-4   So.   0.0   0.0

* – Indicates Monograms won

TONIGHT’S GAME — For the first time in school history, the 11th-ranked Notre Dame women’s basketball team (2-0) plays back-to-back home games against ranked opponents as the Irish entertain sixth-ranked Duke in the Blue Devils first-ever appearance at the Joyce Center. Notre Dame opened up the 1998-99 campaign against then sixth-ranked UCLA and came away with a convincing 99-82 victory over the Bruins. On Wednesday evening, the Irish posted a 71-60 road win at Butler. Duke is coming off a 72-70 loss in its home opener to Virginia Tech after going 1-1 in the Nike Four Fall in the Fall at San Jose, Calif., last weekend..

BUTLER REVIEW — Danielle Green led three Notre Dame players in double figures as she scored a game-high 23 points as the Irish earned an 11-point decision at Butler 71-60. Green had 15 first-half points to give the Irish a 31-22 halftime advantage. Sheila McMillen had 12 of her 14 points in the second half as she played 38 minutes in the contest. Ruth Riley was the only other Irish player in double figures as she netted 13 points. Kelley Siemon led all rebounders with nine boards. Notre Dame never trailed in the contest and jumped out to an 11-0 lead. The Irish led by as many as 13 in the second half, but the Bulldogs cut the advantage to three with 9:55 left to play in the game. Notre Dame then put the game away with a 12-2 run to extend its lead to 13 points with just under six minutes to play in the contest.

HEAD COACH MUFFET McGRAW — Notre Dame head coach Muffet McGraw is in her 12th season with the Irish and 17th as a collegiate coach. She has guided Notre Dame to three straight NCAA tournament appearances and five overall. McGraw led the Irish to the 1997 Final Four as her team claimed the East Reginal championship. In 1998, McGraw’s squad finished with a 22-10 mark and advanced to the Sweet 16. In her 11-plus seasons at Notre Dame, she has a record of 237-105 (.693), and in 16 campaign overall, her teams have registered a 325-146 (.690) ledger. Prior to coming to Notre Dame, she spent five seasons at Lehigh where she compiled an 88-41 record for a .683 winning percentage.

SERIES RECORD VERSUS DUKE — This evening’s contest is the fourth meeting between the two schools. Notre Dame leads the series 2-1. The Irish were victorious the first two times the teams played picking up a 74-67 victory in the National Women’s Invitational in 1986 earning a 78-66 win in Durham, N.C. McGraw’s squad travelled to Duke last season and dropped an 80-62 decision to the Blue Devils. McGraw is 1-1 all-time versus Duke.

NOTRE DAME GETS 400TH WIN IN PROGRAM’S HISTORY — Notre Dame’s victory over UCLA on Saturday marked the 400th in the program’s history since the inaugural season in 1977-78. In the 21-plus seasons, Irish teams have compiled a 400-204 mark for a 66.2 winning percentage and have averaged 19.0 victories since the program’s first campaign.

IVEY NAMED BIG EAST CO-PLAYER OF THE WEEK — For the second time in her career, Irish junior guard Niele Ivey has been named the BIG EAST Player of the Week. She shared the honor this week with Connecticut’s Paige Sauer. Ivey led all Irish scorers against UCLA with a career-high 25 points and recorded her first career double-double by also dishing off personal best 11 assists. In addition, she grabbed four rebounds and made five steals. Her 25-point outing on Saturday marked the second time in her career that she has scored 20-plus points in a contest. Ivey’s first career 20-point game came at Storrs, Conn. last season when she scored 20 points in a loss to the Huskies.

THE CAPTAIN — Sheila McMillen is Notre Dame’s captain this season. This is the first time since 1981-82, and the second time in the program’s history, that the Irish have had just one player serve as a captain during the course of the season. The only other lone captain during a basketball season was Missy Conboy, now an associated athletic director at Notre Dame.

McMILLEN EYES 1,000TH POINT — Senior guard Sheila McMillen enters this week’s two games 12 points shy of becoming the 14th player in Notre Dame women’s basketball history to reach the 1000-point plateau. McMillen has played in 102 games during her three-plus seasons and has started 40 of those contests while averaging 9.7 ppg. She has a better than 40 percent shooting percentage from the field and has hit better than 78 percent of her free throw attempts. McMillen was Notre Dame’s leading scorer a year ago, averaging 13.6 ppg. and has scored in double figures in 47 games during her career.

BIG NUMBERS IN SEASON OPENER — Notre Dame’s 99 points were the second most in a season opener (the most was 113 versus Liberty on November 24, 1989) and most by a Notre Dame team in a season opener at the Joyce Center.

LOFTY RANKINGS — For just the second time in its 22-year history, Notre Dame started the season ranked. The Irish began the 1998-99 campaign with its highest preseason rankings in both the Associated Press and USA Today/ESPN polls at 17th and 19th, respectively. The win over sixth-ranked UCLA on Saturday, has propelled the Irish to 11th in the AP Poll. Two years ago, Coach Muffet McGraw’s squad was 20th in the AP and 25th in the USA Today/ESPN preseason rankings.

OUT OF THE GATES — Notre Dame’s early-season schedule certainly is the toughest in school history and one of the most challenging nationally with four of the first seven teams on the Irish schedule ranked in the preseason. While the schedule is formidable, McGraw and her team are going to enjoy the luxury of playing all of those games at the Joyce Center. Notre Dame’s faces its second ranked in opponent tonight when they entertain sixth-ranked Duke. on Saturday, November 21 at 7:30 p.m. The other two opponents currently ranked in the top 25 scheduled to pay a visit to the Joyce Center are 24th-ranked Illinois on Tuesday, November 24 at 7:00 p.m. and BIG EAST rival and second-ranked Connecticut on Tuesday, December 8 at 7:00 p.m.

HOME COOKING — Notre Dame starts the season by playing six of its first eight games at home. After tonight’s contest, the Irish entertain Illinois on Tuesday, November 24 at 7:00 p.m. Then its off to San Francisco for its second game of the season away from the friendly confines of the Joyce Center. Following that game, the Irish return home for three straight home games versus Toledo, Connecticut and Villanova.

BACK-TO-BACK 23-POINT OUTINGS FOR GREEN — Senior guard Danielle Green has had back-to-back career-high 23 point outings in Notre Dame’s first two games against UCLA and Butler. Heading into this season, she had only hit the 20-point mark once in two seasons of action. Her first and only other 20-point outing came against Providence (22 points) last season. Against UCLA, Green canned 10-of-18 shots from the field. In addition to her 23 points in the win over the Bruins, she also grabbed a team-high seven rebounds. In the Butler game, she hit nine-of-17 shots and had five rebounds in 35 minutes of action.

ELITE COMPANY — Notre Dame was one of just nine schools to advance to the Sweet 16 in both 1997 and 1998. The eight other schools on the short list included: Alabama, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Louisiana Tech, North Carolina, Old Dominion and Tennessee. The Irish also were one of 29 teams to earn an NCAA tournament bid each of the last three seasons.

HILLS IMPRESSIVE IN COLLEGIATE DEBUT — Sherisha Hills, who missed the first two exhibition game after suffering a concussion during pre-game collision with Danielle Green had 14 points in her debut. Hills canned her first three-point attempts and finished hitting three-of-seven from long-range. She played 20 minutes in the contest, while Notre Dame’s other rookie, Ericka Haney (Toledo, Ohio), played 16 minutes and finished with four points.

IRISH IN THE JOYCE CENTER — Since its inaugural season in 1977-78, Notre Dame has played all of its games at the Joyce Center. The Irish own a 185-64 mark for a .743 winning percentage since that first season. Last season, Notre Dame won school-record 12 games at home en route to a 12-1 record. Since a 78-59 loss to Connecticut on December 6 of last season, the Irish have won 12 straight home games. The record for consecutive home victories at the Joyce Center is 15 set from January 2, 1995 thru January 10, 1996.

WITH THE STUFF — Notre Dame had eight blocks against UCLA, while the Bruins had none. Ruth Riley and Diana Braendly (Staten Island, N.Y.) each had three. For Braendly, the three blocks tied her career best.

RILEY STARS FOR U.S. SELECT TEAM — Ruth Riley starred for the 1998 USA Women’s Select Team over the summer. The team compiled an eight-game, 15-day tour of Puerto Rico, Poland and Spain and finished 7-1 mark. Riley was the team’s second-leading scorer and top rebounder with averages of 10.3 ppg. and 7.6 rpg. She registered two double-doubles in the seven games and recorded bests of 20 points and 10 rebounds ina 72-70 victory over Puerto . Riley led the team once and in rebounding on four occasions.

HENDERSON TOURS WITH BIG EAST ALL-STARS — Julie Henderson toured with the 1998 BIG EAST/Nike Women’s Basketball All-Star Team this summer. The squad finished with a 2-3 record against teams from Austria, Slovakia and the Czech Republic. Henderson was one of the bright spots onlast summer’s squad averaging 9.0 points and 3.7 rebounds. She had a personal tour high 17 ponts in the final game against Karlov Vary BBC.

PRESEASON HONORS FOR RILEY AND McMILLEN — The names of Ruth Riley and Sheila McMillen appear on preseason All-America teams of several publications. Notre Dame also is ranked in the polls of every preseason publication.

Street & Smith’s: Ruth Riley – First Team; Sheila McMillen – High Honorable Mention; Notre Dame – 24th
The Sporting News: Notre Dame -17th
Dick Vitale’s College Basketball: Notre Dame -14th
Athlon College Basketball: Ruth Riley – Third Team; Notre Dame – 18th
Basketball News: Notre Dame – 22nd
Women’s Basketball Journal: Ruth Riley – Third Team; Notre Dame – 10th
Associated Press: Ruth Riley – Honorable Mention

IRISH ON THE TUBE — For the third consecutive year, Notre Dame will be part of the BIG EAST Women’s Basketball Television Package. It’s game at Rutgers on Saturday, February 13 at 2:00 p.m. will be broadcoast by Fox Sports New York, Sports Channel Florida, Fox Sports New England and Fox Sports Chicago. WHME-TV 46 in South Bend will televise Notre Dame home games versus Illinois (November 24) and Connecticut (December 8). ESPN Regional Television will televise the South Florida game on December 19. The Michigan State game on December 21 in East Lansing will be televised by Media One Cable. Four other road games which also will be televised include — January 2 vs. Georgetown (WNVT); January 20 at Seton Hall (CN8); January 26 at Syracuse (Time Warner Cable) and February 20 at West Virginia (Mountaineer Sports Network).

MIMI GRIFFIN ON RUTH RILEY — ESPN women’s basketball anaylst Mimi Griffin rated Ruth Riley one of the top five centers nationally. Griffin picked the top five players at each position. In addition to Riley, mentioned among Griffin’s list of top five centers were Demya Walker (Virginia), Maylana Martin (UCLA), Paige Sauer (Connecticut) and Angie Braziel (Texas Tech).

IRISH SIGN THREE RECRUITS — Irish head coach Muffet McGraw signed three players to national letters of intent during the early signing period. Set to join the Irish in the fall of 1999 are Alicia Ratay, a 5-11 guard from Lake Zurich, Ill.; 6-3 forward Amanda Barksdale from Friendswood, Tex.; and Monique Hernandez, a 5-9 guard out of Rio Rancho, N.M. All three players are ranked in the top 100 by Blue Star Basketball. Ratay, who led the U.S. Youth World Games team to a bronze medal during the summer, is eighth, while Barksdale is rated 41st and Hernandez 98th.


  • Diana Braendly tied her career-best with three blocks against UCLA. Had four points and four steals against the Bruins.
  • Danielle Green has had back-to-back career-high 23 points outings in wins over UCLA and Butler. She is the leading scorer with a 23 ppg. average and also is among the leading rebounders with 6.0 rpg. Green is hitting 54.3 percent of her shots from the field and was 10-18 (both career-highs) against the Bruins and 9-17 versus the Bulldogs. She grabbed a team-high seven boards against UCLA.
  • Ericka Haney had four points and four rebounds in 16 minutes of action in her collegiate debut against UCLA.
  • Sherisha Hills scored 14 points and played 20 minutes in first college game. Hit her first three three-point attempts (was three-for-seven overall in the contest). She had missed the first two exhibition games after suffering a concussion following a collision with Danille Green in pre-game warmups of the first exhibition contest.
  • Niele Ivey had career bests of 25 points and 11 rebounds for her first career double-double in the season opener against UCLA. Ivey has played a career-high 38 minutes in both the UCLA and Butler contests. She leads the team win assists (16) and steals (10). Shared BIG EAST Player of the Week honors for her performance against the Bruins.
  • Sheila McMillen has had 47 double figure outings in her career. She is 12 points shy of becoming the 14th player in Notre Dame women’s basketball history to reach the 1000-point plateau. McMillen is averaging 12.5 ppg. and had 14 points (12 in the second half) in win over Butler.
  • Ruth Riley is averaging 11.5 ppg. and 4.5 rpg. this season as well as 3.0 blocks per game. She scored 13 points against Butler.
  • Kelley Siemon played 31 minutes in season opener against the Bruins. Siemon is the leading rebounder on the team with a 6.5 average, while averaging 7.0 ppg.. She grabbed a game-high nine rebounds in win at Butler.

(Week of Nov. 16)

                            LW1.  Purdue (1-0)             52.  Connecticut (2-0)        33.  Louisiana Tech (0-0)     24.  Tennessee (1-1)          15.  North Carolina (2-0)    106.  Duke (1-1)               47.  Georgia (0-0)            78.  Virginia (1-0)           89.  Alabama (2-0)            910. Rutgers (2-0)           1211. NOTRE DAME (1-0)        1712. Texas Tech (1-0)        1413. George Washington (1-0) 1314. UCLA (0-1)               615. Old Dominion (1-0)      1516. No. Carolina St. (1-0)  1617. Kansas (0-1)            1118. Arkansas (2-1)          1819. Vanderbilt (2-0)        2020. Florida (1-0)          T2221. Iowa State (1-0)       T2222. Santa Barbara (0-0)     2423. Nebraska (2-0)          NR24  Illinois (0-0)          2525. Wisconsin (1-0)         NR

(PRESEASON) Final 1997-98 Ranking

1.  Tennessee                12.  Louisiana Tech           23.  Connecticut              34.  Duke                    T7 5.  Purdue                  116.  UCLA                    207.  North Carolina           38.  Kansas                  229.  Texas Tech              1010. Georgia                 NR11. Rutgers                 1612. North Carolina State     413. Alabama                 1314  Virginia                2315. Old Dominion             616. George Washington       NR17. Stanford                1518. Arkansas                T719. NOTRE DAME              1820. Florida                 1221. Arizona                  922. Vanderbilt              2523. Wisconsin               NR24. Illinois                1425. Iowa State              24

Irish vs. 1998-99 Opponents

Team                  RecordBoston College         3-2Butler                18-6Connecticut            0-8Duke                   2-1Georgetown            10-1Illinois               0-3Miami                  6-2Michigan State         2-6Pittsburgh             5-0Providence             4-0Rutgers                4-5St. John's             6-0San Francisco          1-0Seton Hall             5-2South Florida          1-0Syracuse               8-1Toledo                 2-1UCLA                   4-8Villanova              6-3West Virginia          4-0Total                 91-49  (.650)


1.  CONNECTICUT       1412.  RUTGERS           1363.  NOTRE DAME        1204.  BOSTON COLLEGE    1085.  VILLANOVA          956.  MIAMI              837.  GEORGETOWN         688.  SYRACUSE           639.  WEST VIRGINIA      6310. PROVIDENCE         4811. ST. JOHN'S         32  12. SETON HALL         3013. PITTSBURGH         26

Preseason BIG EAST Player of the Year:
Svetlana Abrosimova – Connecticut

Preseason BIG EAST Rookie of the Year:
Tamika Williams – Connecticut

Preseason All-BIG EAST First Team:
Svetlana Abrosimova – Connecticut
Cal Bouchard – Boston College
Kym Hope – Miami
Tasha Pointer – Rutgers
Tomora Young – Rutgers

Preseason All-BIG EAST Second Team:
Sheila McMillen – Notre Dame
Ruth Riley – Notre Dame
Paige Sauer – Connecticut
Whitney Steele – Boston College
Sylita Thomas – Georgetown

Series Record
Notre Dame leads 2-1 Home: 0-0, Away: 1-1, Neutral: 1-0

Date       Site            Score3-22-86    Amarillo, TX *  W   74-672-6-88     Durham, NC      W   78-6611-22-97   Durham, NC      L   62-80

* – NWIT

Series Scoring

                Total   AverageNotre Dame      214     71.3Duke            213     71.0

Current Win Streak: Duke, 1 game
McGraw vs. Connecticut: 1-1
ND Biggest Win: 12 (78-66 on 2-6-88)
DU Biggest Win: 18 (80-62 on 11-22-97)
ND Longest Win Streak: 2 (from 1986-88)
DU Longest Win Streak: 1 (1997)