The Week in Notre Dame Athletics: Marching Onward

And so it ended for the great Skylar Diggins. - Stacy Revere

Notre Dame student athletes racked up wins in lacrosse, baseball, softball, tennis, and rowing this past week.

Without further ado, we bring you the results of the last week's Irish match-ups.

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Lacrosse: The no. 4 men's team (8-2, 2-1) earned a 13-8 victory over Providence on the road this past Sunday behind the 4-goal, 1-assist performance of attackman Sean Rogers. After Providence tied the game at 5 in the third quarter, Notre Dame went on a decisive 7-2 run to secure the victory.

The Irish face Georgetown this Sunday at 11:00 a.m. EST at home.

The no. 6/7 women's team (10-0) earned wins over no. 20 Louisville on Friday and Cincinnati on Sunday. Against Louisville, the Irish held on for a 16-15 double overtime victory. Sunday, they claimed a strong 13-6 win over the Bearcats and tied the program record for best start to a season.

The Irish face Loyola (MD) at home on Friday evening (7:00 p.m. EST) and Georgetown on Sunday afternoon (2:00 p.m. EST) at home.

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Baseball: The no. 16 Irish (19-11), went 2-2 over the last week, claiming wins in their first two of a three-game series with Villanova, walking off with a 4-3 win in eleven innings on Friday, then earning an 11-8 victory on Saturday. Sunday, Villanova claimed a 10-6 win over the Irish. Tuesday night was another rough outing for Notre Dame, who lost in a 4-1 upset at the hands of Michigan (apparently Denard Robinson was not on the mound for the Wolverines).

The Irish travel to Pittsburgh for games on Friday evening, Saturday afternoon, and mid-day Sunday. Tuesday, they face Michigan in Ann Arbor, and Wednesday, Bowling Green at home (5:35 p.m. EST).

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Softball: The Irish (26-10, 7-1) split their matches of the last week, 2-2. Notre Dame split Saturday's double-header with Villanova, earning a 4-1 victory and a 1-0 loss. Sunday, the Irish claimed a big 9-3 win behind a six-run sixth inning. Tuesday, they fell hard to Northwestern in Evanston behind a nine-run fifth inning by the Wildcats, losing 11-3.

The Irish face Toledo this Thursday at home (5:00 p.m. EST), then Rutgers in a double-header on Saturday (12:00, 2:00 p.m. EST) and again on Sunday (12:00 p.m. EST). Tuesday, they face Michigan State in East Lansing.

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Tennis: The no. 21 women's team (12-6) lost a close dual decision, 4-3, to no. 36 Memphis on the road this past weekend. Notre Dame faces Central Florida on Saturday and South Florida on Sunday on the road.

The no. 31 men's team (15-7) won out over no. 65 SMU, 6-1, USF, 6-1, and Butler, 7-0, at home over the weekend. The Irish will face no. 50 Louisville on Saturday on the road.

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Track & Field: The Irish competed at the Spartan Invitational in East Lansing over the past weekend, earning five runner-up finishes and 36 top-10 finishes. The runner-up finishes came in the women's 100mH, high jump, long jump, triple jump, and javelin. In an unlikely turn of events, the men's team somehow claimed 7th, 8th, and 9th place in a 56-man field in the 800m (did they run it 3-legged-race style?).

The Irish travel to Louisville this Saturday for the Louisville Border Battle.

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Rowing: The no. 13 Irish earned a pair of race wins and four runner-up finishes at the Ohio State Rowing Invitational over the weekend, upsetting no. 8 Michigan in both victories (in the first, by just .13 seconds in a nearly-seven minute race).

The Irish next compete in the Lake Natoma Invitational in Sacramento, CA, on April 20-21.

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Golf: The no. 23 women's team came in 8th in a 15-team field over the weekend in the DAC/SMU Invitational in Dallas to finish the regular season with a 5-0 conference record (104-32-0). Freshman Talia Campbell tied for 10th in the tournament in her hometown, coming in at 12 over par after three rounds.

Now the Irish prepare for the Big East Championship in Florida in two weeks.

The men's team earned a disappointing 15th-place finish at the Irish Creek Collegiate in NC over the weekend. The Warren Golf Course on campus opening up just two weekends ago should be a help to the Irish as they look to improve on their season.

The Irish compete in the Hawkeye Invitational in Iowa City this Saturday and Sunday.

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Soccer: They're not in season, but the women's team hosted Mexico's under-20 team over the weekend and earned a 4-3 win. They continue spring play against Kentucky on Saturday at 1:00 p.m. EST at home.

The men's team began spring play this Sunday with a match against Western Michigan at home and another immediately following against Valparaiso. The Irish continue spring play this Saturday evening in a road match with Indiana University.

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Basketball: The no. 2 women's team (35-2) ended tournament play on Sunday in their Final Four match-up with Connecticut in the NCAA tournament. The Huskies beat the Irish, 83-65, and went on to claim a championship victory over Louisville by thirty-three points on Tuesday. UConn hit its stride early behind the stupendous play of freshman Breanna Stewart and her 29 points, while the Irish struggled all night with shooting against a sturdy defense - Diggins was held to just 3 for 15 from the field, and the Irish at one point missed 14 consecutive shots. The teams were neck-and-neck until the final minutes of the first half, and in the second half, the Irish couldn't get closer than within six points of UConn. You can find Cubfansince1957's wrap-up and a bit of discussion here.

It was a difficult way to watch Skylar Diggins's career at Notre Dame conclude, but this was an unexpectedly successful season for the Irish and for the mightily successful Diggins. That the then-one-loss Irish beat the four-loss national champions in three of their four head-to-head matches this season is small consolation, but such is the mercurial consequence of determining a champion through a single elimination tournament. C'est la sports.

Skylar Diggins was named the Nancy Lieberman Award winner and chosen for the WBCA Coaches' All-America Team this past week. Coach Muffet McGraw was named to the same All-America Team, named AP Division I Women's National Coach of the Year, WBCA Division I National Coach of the Year, USBWA Women's National Coach of the Year, and the Naismith Women's College Coach of the Year, in recognition of her great success and skill in coaching this team.

This year's team set the program record for season winning percentage (.946), won the Big East regular season title and the postseason tournament crown, and went undefeated in Big East play, plus went 12-2 against ranked teams with 6 victories over top-10 teams, and with the men's team, continued to post a perfect graduation rate for its players. Congratulations, Irish.

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One annual...athletic...tradition coming up this Friday, April 12th, are the Leprechaun Tryouts. Best of luck to all competitors. May your cheers be booming, your legs, spry, and your chinstrap beard, abundant.

We leave you with the "ND Top Ten" for March, a newish video feature from Notre Dame Athletics that gives you the top ten Fighting Irish plays each month.


We'll bring you updates again next week on all our Notre Dame Olympic sports. Go Irish.

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