Marina Mabrey’s late-game heroics not enough for Notre Dame

Marina Mabrey’s late-game heroics not enough for Notre Dame

Marina Mabrey’s late-game heroics not enough for Notre Dame

It was a rematch seven years in the making as No. 1 Baylor and No. 1 Notre Dame squared off in the national championship for the first time since 2011-12.

"It's tough", the 5-foot-8 senior from Milwaukee said. And we know one thing.

Of Mulkey's three titles, it's the second time that Baylor head coach is sharing it with her daughter. "You can't really do anything about that one". "She got to the free-throw line".

That completed a game that followed a familiar script for the Irish in their previous tournament contests in which they fell behind only to finish strong.

Ogunbowale, who also had six rebounds, came up big in Friday's semifinal against UConn, finishing with a game-high 23 points. "These kids will get us back here, I promise". "I knew it was my time to step-up". And the way they won in 2018 was breathtaking, with buzzer-beaters by Ogunbowale in the semifinal and championship games against CT and Mississippi State, respectively. Cox, who hobbled to the sidelines on crutches to celebrate with her teammates after the final buzzer, told ESPN that she's unsure about the severity of her injury.

"I'm just thankful that LC gave us a cushion before she went down, " sophomore DiDi Richards said.

Faced with all that adversity, and playing on the biggest stage against a Notre Dame team poised to repeat, it would have been understandable if this team had thrown in the towel.

To get to the championship game, Notre Dame took out No. 2-seeded University of CT in the Final Four.

Bears graduate-transfer guard Chloe Jackson's layup with five seconds to play was the difference. "You're going to see those guys play at the next level", Mulkey said.

Freshman NaLyssa Smith of @BaylorWBB says the player she hopes to emulate is @Candace_Parker.

Her injury was bad enough that she had to leave the floor via wheelchair.

Ogunbowale led the charge again, scoring 17 of her 31 points in the second half.

And such things do matter to Mulkey, whose program joins UConn (11) and Tennessee (eight) as women's teams to win at least three championships in the NCAA era.

The three titles put Mulkey behind only Geno Auriemma, who has 11 at CT, and the late Pat Summitt, who had eight at Tennessee, in the women's game.

In November 2017, Fuller lost her unborn child, Scout Marie. Both teams have dominant inside players.

Had one more shot gone differently, Marina Mabrey's name would have been etched into basketball lore forever.

The Lady Bears were primed to run away with the game as Notre Dame struggled to score.

The 11-point combined differential for the three games in the Final Four was the closest in the history of the tournament, topping last season's 15-point margin. They were the preseason No. 1, something that made head coach Muffet McGraw uncomfortable.

McGraw's comments drew both praise and criticism - you can probably guess where most of the criticism was coming from - and became a major subject of conversation in Tampa, Florida. "We kind of knew they were going to come the way they came in the fourth".

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