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Notre Dame Women’s Basketball: Fighting Irish Defeat Louisville 82-68

Grace Hall stays lit up

NCAA Womens Basketball: Louisville at Notre Dame Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

What a win, peeps!

First of all, sorry, loyal readers, for the hiatus. I’m back, though. I want to cover for you all the Number 1 team in Women’s College Basketball. Since I’ve been gone (yes, that was a blatant Kelly Clarkson reference), Muffett McGraw has won 900 games, and Baylor beat UConn. Since the Irish were #2 last week when that happened, the Irish got the number 1 ranking as of this week. The Irish were also 2-0 in ACC play.

Tonight, the Notre Dame Fighting Irish got a huge W against the Number 2 Louisville Cardinals. It was a home sellout crowd that provided much of the energy tonight. A solid showing from the team tonight. Let’s recap it.

NCAA Womens Basketball: Louisville at Notre Dame Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

Irish vs. Cardinals

This game was the only time the two teams will meet in the regular season, so it was big for ACC standings, even this early in the season.

At the beginning of the game, the Irish (13-1, 3-0 ACC) started pretty well, but it remained back and forth with shot selection and makes. However, the first half really was Louisville’s. They went up 35-33 at the halfway point for a few reasons. First of all, they barely turned the ball over. The Irish had 11 turnovers to their 2. Additionally, the Irish went to the free throw line a lot (in both halves, really, as many people on Twitter pointed out to us). I feared the worst, though, because the Irish were missing many of their free throws. I was having flashbacks to the game against UConn last month. But, the Cardinals struggled to add onto the lead, keeping the Irish in the game.

One the third quarter started, the Irish came out on fire. Hitting shots and causing more Cardinal fouls especially right under the hoop. Crisp passes and also finally hitting some three point shots after going 0-4 in the first half led to the Irish building a lead. At the end of the third, the Irish forced a Cardinal charge to get last possession. Up 7, Arike Ogunbowale hit a monster 3 right before the buzzer to put the lead to 10 points, 57-47.

The Irish had it 62-52 in the 4th quarter, but then the Cardinals forced some Irish bad shots/turnovers and made shots of their own to cut the lead to 66-64. The Irish kept the composure to continue to build onto and never lose control of the lead. After a few minutes, Arike took a 3 from the right corner (as we know, a great place on the court for her) and buried it. The Cardinals couldn’t keep up with the possessions and fouls. After all was said and done, the Irish dominated the game late to take an 82-68 victory.

NCAA Womens Basketball: Louisville at Notre Dame Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

Good stuff from the Irish, tonight!

Next Up

The Irish will continue ACC play on Sunday, 1/13, as they take on Wake Forest in Purcell Pavilion. That game will tip off at 1 PM, and you can find it on the ACC Network and/or WatchESPN. After that, the Irish will travel to Blacksburg, VA to take on Virginia Tech on Wed, 1/16 at 7 PM also on the ACC Network and/or WatchESPN.