VANCOUVER – The No. 1 Notre Dame women’s basketball team handed Drake its first loss of the season on Friday, advancing to the championship game of the Vancouver Showcase. The Fighting Irish (5-0) were powered by Arike Ogunbowale and Jackie Young, as the duo scored a combined 55 points against the Bulldogs (5-1).
“Really pleased with the win,” Karen & Kevin Keyes Notre Dame head coach Muffet McGraw said. “We had three starters out, so to come in with a lot of different lineups, I thought we played pretty well.”
How It Happened
Notre Dame scored eight of its first 10 points in the paint and got out to a quick 10-4 lead. Drake retaliated with a 7-0 run over the next 1:11 to take their first lead of the game. Later, an Ogunbowale buzzer beater would tie the score at 17-all, ending the first quarter.
Notre Dame and Drake continued to trade shots in the first five minutes of the second quarter. Up 29-28 at the 4:56 mark, the Irish earned some separation, ending the half on a 15-3 run to extend their lead to 44-31 at the midway point.
Ogunbowale matched her first half performance at DePaul from a week ago, tallying 19 points by the half. She was followed by 13 points from Young.
The Irish kept their foot on the gas in the third quarter, shooting 11-of-18 from the field to outpace the Bulldogs, 27-16, for the period. Young and Ogunbowale combined for 19 of the team’s points as the latter ended the quarter with an old-fashioned three-point play right before the buzzer.
Young would get up to her total of 25 points midway through the fourth before being subbed out. In addition, Brianna Turner supplied 12 points, six rebounds and a season best four blocks in the contest.
Player of the Game
Ogunbowale tied her season high of 30 points, converting 11-of-19 from the field. The senior was two points shy of her career high and two rebounds shy of a double-double.
Stat of the Game
For the second time this tournament, and third time this year, the Irish scored over 50 points in the paint, tallying 52 tonight.
- Today marked the first ever meeting between Notre Dame and Drake.
- Coach McGraw earned career win No. 893.
- The Irish have now advanced to a Thanksgiving Showcase final for the second consecutive year. Last season, Notre Dame won the Gulf Coast Showcase in Ft. Myers, Florida.
- Sophomore Danielle Patterson made her first career start in place of the injured Jessica Shepard.
- Ogunbowale has now recorded five straight games with 20-plus points, picking up 30 on Friday. Last season, she shattered the Notre Dame single-season record for 20-plus scoring games with 25. Her career high is five straight set back in March of last season.
- Ogunbowale now has 38 career games with 20-plus points, surpassing Ruth Riley for fourth all-time at Notre Dame.
- Ogunbowale earned her sixth career game with 30 or more points.
- Young earned her second game of 20-plus points this season and 13th of her career.
- Turner has scored in double-digits in all but the DePaul game, tallying 12 tonight.
- The Irish scored over 50 points in the paint for the second straight game.
- Ogunbowale had 19 points in the first half, matching her performance at then No. 15 DePaul on Nov. 17.
With the victory, the Irish move on to the Vancouver Showcase finals, where they’ll clash with the winner of No. 9 Oregon State/No. 13 South Carolina. The championship game will take place Saturday, Nov. 24, at 8 p.m. ET.