Games 4-6 Preview: Vancouver Showcase

#1 Notre Dame at the Vancouver Showcase
 Tournament Central:
 Where:  Vancouver Convention Centre 
 Watch:  BDglobal Live Stream (fee required)
 Tickets:  Click Here
 Listen:  Pulse FM 96.9/92.1/103.1 | Bob Nagle (PxP) 
 Live Scoring:  Statbroadcast
 Notes:  Notre Dame | Gonzaga
 Social:  @NDWBB | #GoIrish ☘️
 Quarterfinal:  vs Gonzaga | Thursday, Nov. 22 | 3 pm ET
 Semifinal (if win):  winner of Drake/Rutgers | Friday, Nov. 23 | 9 pm ET
 Finals or 3rd Place game:  vs TBD | Saturday, Nov. 24 | 8 pm ET

VANCOUVER – Three games in three days – that’s what the No. 1 University of Notre Dame women’s basketball team will have to face when the Vancouver Showcase begins on Thursday, Nov. 22. The Fighting Irish (3-0) kick off the eight-team bracket at 3 p.m. ET on Thanksgiving Day with Gonzaga (4-0). If victorious, the Irish will clash with the winner of the Drake/Rutgers matchup in Friday’s semifinal round at 9 p.m. If the Irish reach either Saturday’s title game or third place bout, that matchup will occur at 8 p.m. regardless.  

The Irish are no strangers to the eight-team Thanksgiving showcase format. Last season, Notre Dame won the Gulf Coast Showcase, knocking off ETSU, No. 17 South Florida and No. 3 South Carolina in consecutive days. Jackie Young was named the tournament’s MVP after averaging 19.3 points and 7.7 rebounds.

The title says it all about junior guard Jackie Young. Last season, the Irish played 16 ranked opponents and in those games Young not only outperformed her season scoring average, but also ranked second among all Irish players in scoring for those games: 16.6 points on 51.8 percent shooting, to go with her 6.8 rebounds and 3.5 assists against top-25 teams.

Well first game against a top-25 team this season and Young was back at it again. The Indiana native recorded a 28-point, 12-rebound, double-double at No. 15 DePaul. She also converted a career best 11-of-12 from the free-throw line. 

When looking at Notre Dame’s top-two steal getters, look no further than two freshmen: Abby Prohaska and Jordan Nixon. Prohaska is coming off a big defensive game against No. 15 DePaul, in which she secured four steals to bring her season total to seven. Meanwhile, Nixon follows right behind with six. 

After shattering the Notre Dame single season record for 20-point games with 25 last year, Ogunbowale is back at it again, starting the season with three in a row. In fact, the only other ACC player with three 20-point scoring games is the one she battled last season for ACC Player of the Year, Asia Durr.

Ogunbowale now has 36 career games with 20-plus points, passing  Jewell Loyd for fifth all-time. Next up is Ruth Riley with 37.  

Coach McGraw credited two important sparks off the bench after the big 101-77 win at No. 15 DePaul: Abby Prohaska and Danielle Patterson. Prohaska tallied four points, four assists, zero turnovers and four steals in 26 minutes of play. More importantly, Prohaska’s plus-minus of +25 was the highest of any Irish player in the win. Meanwhile, Patterson posted a career game with highs in points (14), made field goals (5) and blocks (3).

Through three games, the Irish are averaging 19.7 assists, which ranks 26th in the country. Leading scorer, Ogunbowale, who averaged 2.8 assists per game last year, is the team leader at 4.7  per game, which ranks third in the ACC. Consider the fact that Ogunbowale has totaled 75 points and 14 assists – meaning she’s already responsible for over 100 points this season.

Both Jordan Nixon and Jackie Young follow suit with 3.7 assists per game.

Notre Dame ranks fourth in the nation in shooting percentage, converting over half its shots at 53.8 percent. Jessica Shepard leads the way for the Irish, ranked 38th in the country at 64.3 percent. She is followed by Jackie Young, ranked 65th at 60.7 percent.

All has led to the Irish ranking ninth in the country in scoring, averaging 93.0 points per game.

 — ND —