No. 2 Notre Dame at No. 8 Maryland photos by USA TODAY Sports
OVERVIEW: Nicknamed "Earl" ... team tri-captain ... long, lanky post player who is a versatile asset, particularly on the defensive end of the floor with her rebounding and shot-blocking prowess ... agile and aggressive with good athleticism that can be valuable in traps and presses ... also has the size and potential to play bigger than her 6-foot-1 frame ... one of nation's most improved players last season, moving into starting lineup in third game and never letting go, more than doubling her statistical production from the previous year ... will provide veteran leadership for a youthful Fighting Irish post corps this season.
2013 EUROPEAN TOUR: Played in two games (starting once) and averaging 3.5 points, 4.5 rebounds and 2.0 steals per game ... registered five points and six rebounds in first of two wins over French All-Star Team.
JUNIOR SEASON (2012-13): Played in 36 games, starting 33 times (first starts of her career), while averaging 5.4 ppg. and 5.4 rpg. with team-high .581 field goal percentage (all career-high marks) ... ranked 10th in BIG EAST in blocked shots (1.25 bpg.; team-high 45 total), registering at least one block in 28 games (including 14 games with multiple blocks) ... turned in eight double-figure scoring efforts (had two in first two seasons combined), all after moving into lineup ... made most of her 13 minutes in home opener against UMass with seven points on perfect shooting night (2-2 FG, 3-3 FT) ...earned first career start against Mercer and validated that selection with (then) career-high 12 points, five rebounds, three assists and two blocks ...contributed five points, four rebounds and two steals in win at No. 19/22 UCLA ... posted near double-double in return to her home state at Central Michigan with 10 points, eight rebounds and three steals in 27 minutes ... scored career-high 15 points (6-7 FG) and swiped career-high five steals against Utah State, while matching career best with three blocks in 16 minutes ... had 12 points (5-9 FG), six rebounds vs. Alabama A&M ... recorded 11 points and tied (then) career high with nine rebounds against Kansas State ... handed out career-best four assists against No. 11 Purdue, complementing five points and seven rebounds ... had nine points (2-2 FG, 5-6 FT), five rebounds and two blocks in 15 minutes vs. Saint Francis (Pa.) ... critical defensive presence down stretch in BIG EAST opener at No. 1 Connecticut, coming up with pair of blocks in final seven minutes, including swat with 29 seconds left and rebound of missed UConn shot with six seconds left (both with Irish up by one) as Notre Dame earned first-ever road win over a top-ranked opponent ... logged six rebounds and matched career high with three blocks at South Florida ...scored 10 points (4-5 FG) and grabbed six rebounds in a (then) career-high 28 minutes against Rutgers; also dished out two assists and blocked a pair of shots ...had four points, three rebounds and three assists against Providence ...did little bit of everything in road win at No. 9 Tennessee with two points, five rebounds, three assists and two steals ... tied career high with 15 points on near-perfect shooting afternoon (5-6 FG, 5-5 FT) at Seton Hall; also grabbed five rebounds in 26 minutes ...registered second double-digit scoring effort in as many games with 10 points (5-5 FG) against No. 10/11 Louisville; also grabbed six rebounds and dished out two assists ...missed Marquette game following minor knee procedure ...returned to action at DePaul, playing 21 minutes and collecting four rebounds, two steals and two points ... grabbed seven rebounds and handed out three assists in reserve role against No. 22/20 Syracuse ... capitalized on her 14 minutes at Providence with two points, four rebounds and two steals ... was essential contributor in triple-overtime win over No. 3 Connecticut with nine points (career-high 5-6 FT) and (then) career-best 10 rebounds in career-high 38 minutes; converted 3-of-4 free throws in third overtime, including tying FT with 3:42 left to help spark decisive 11-0 run ...set career rebounding high for second game in a row with 12 caroms in BIG EAST quarterfinal win over South Florida; also added eight points (2-3 FG, 4-4 FT), three blocks and three assists ...grabbed six rebounds in BIG EAST Championship final at No. 3 Connecticut, helping hold the fort in the paint while Natalie Achonwa was saddled with foul trouble ...very sharp in first NCAA tournament start vs. Tennessee-Martin, collecting seven points (3-3 FG), eight rebounds, career high-tying four assists and two blocks in 20 minutes ...scored five points and grabbed nine rebounds in NCAA second-round win at Iowa ...had six points (3-4 FG), seven rebounds, two assists and three blocks in NCAA Sweet 16 win over Kansas; also tied career high for sixth time with the three rejections ...continued solid postseason with six points, seven rebounds and career high-tying four assists in NCAA Elite Eight win over No. 5 Duke ...nearly had double-double in NCAA Women's Final Four semifinal game vs. No. 3 Connecticut with eight points and game-high nine rebounds (plus two blocks) in 18 minutes ... averaged 5.9 points and 8.0 rebounds with .545 field goal percentage (18-of-33) in final nine games of season.
SOPHOMORE SEASON (2011-12): Saw action in 31 games, averaging 2.2 points and 2.3 rebounds per game with .459 field goal percentage ... finished with three points, five rebounds and two blocks against Indiana State ... scored four points with four rebounds vs. Hartford ... tossed in six points in BIG EAST opener vs. Marquette ... tied career high with four steals and four free throws made while grabbing seven rebounds in win over Central Florida ... matched career-high with three blocks and set personal-best with nine rebounds vs. Longwood ... had four points and eight rebounds at Mercer ... scored seven points in seven minutes at Cincinnati ... collected five points against Pittsburgh ... tied career high with 10 points (career-best 4-4 FT) in win over visiting Villanova ... registered first postseason points with putback layup in closing seconds of BIG EAST quarterfinal win over No. RV/23 DePaul ... scored her first two points in NCAA Championship play during first-round win over Liberty.
FRESHMAN SEASON (2010-11): Appeared in 26 games, averaging 1.6 points and 2.2 rebounds per contest ... highly-efficient defensive presence who led team with one rebound every 2.7 minutes played ... nearly had "5-5-5" game in her college debut against New Hampshire, registering five points, five rebounds and career-high four steals in 12 minutes ... grabbed four rebounds in six minutes against Morehead State ... came off the bench vs. IUPUI and netted season highs of 10 points and six rebounds in 13 minutes; also blocked a pair of Jaguar shots ... rejected two Creighton shots in three minutes ... finished 4-for-4 from the field with eight points and three steals in nine minutes at Valparaiso ... delivered three points, four rebounds and career-high three blocks in 10 minutes against Loyola Marymount ... did a bit of everything in 17 minutes vs. Southeast Missouri State while finishing with five points, eight rebounds, two assists and two blocks ... grabbed three boards against Pittsburgh ... shot 2-for-2 at the foul line against No. RV/23 St. John's while blocking two shots ... one of three Fighting Irish players to grab game-high six rebounds in win over Seton Hall ... had two points (2-4 FT), three rebounds and two steals in home finale against Cincinnati.
HIGH SCHOOL: Graduated from Grosse Pointe North High School in Grosse Pointe Woods, Mich., where she was a four-year letterwinner and mainstay for head coach Gary Bennett, helping Norsemen to combined record of 94-11 (.895), including a school-record 24-game winning streak during her senior season (2009-10) ... also led team to 2007-08 Michigan Class A state title, as well as three regional championships (and one regional runner-up finish), four district crowns and four conference titles (undefeated in league play her final three seasons) ... two-time Michigan Class A Player of the Year (2008 by Detroit News; 2010 by Associated Press) ... finished close third (five votes shy of second) in 2010 Michigan Miss Basketball voting (and was tops among players from eastern half of state, including Detroit metro area) ... Detroit Free Press Final Four All-Tournament Team (2007) ... three-time Detroit News Dream Team selection (2007, 2009, 2010) ... four-time Basketball Coaches Association of Michigan (BCAM) Class A all-state (2007 - third team, 2008, 2009, 2010 - first team) ... four-time all-metro selection (2007, 2008, 2009, 2010) ... four-time MAC Red Conference MVP and all-conference pick (2006, 2007, 2009, 2010) ... three-time team captain (2008, 2009, 2010) ... ranked 41st by All-Star Girls Report (eighth among wing forwards), 42nd by Blue Star Basketball, and 85th by Dan Olson Collegiate Girls Basketball Report (14th among small forwards) ... career per-game averages of 14.1 points, 9.8 rebounds, 6.0 steals and 3.4 assists ... as senior in 2009-10, averaged 17.6 ppg., 11.4 rpg., 7.6 spg., 5.4 bpg. and 4.0 apg. ... as junior in 2008-09, averaged 12.3 ppg., 8.1 rpg., 4.3 spg. and 2.4 apg., after suffering knee injury during AAU ball the previous summer ... as sophomore in 2007-08 (state title season), averaged 16.0 ppg., 11.0 rpg., 7.2 spg. and 3.8 apg. ... as freshman in 2006-07, averaged 10.6 ppg., 8.8 rpg., 5.0 spg. and 3.4 apg. ... holds numerous school records including rebounds in game (24), steals in a game (12), rebounds in season (271), steals in season (181), free throws made in season (96) and free throws attempted in season (163) ... a triple-double machine in high school, she nearly had a quadruple-double in a January 2010 win over Saginaw Arthur Hill (15 points, 17 rebounds, 10 steals, eight assists, four blocks) ... found great AAU success playing for Michigan Shock/Pistons and head coach John Ciszewski ... helped AAU teams to four consecutive top-10 finishes at AAU Division I Nationals from 2006-09 (best was third in 2008), as well as two adidas Deep South Classic titles (2008 U17 select, 2009) and four AAU state championships ... averaged 19.7 points, 15.3 rebounds, 6.7 steals and 5.3 assists per game during final three seasons of AAU career (led team in scoring each year) ... also a standout high jumper at GPN, qualifying for state meet as a sophomore in 2008.
PERSONAL DATA: Last name pronounced BREAK-er ... daughter of Veronica and Daniel Braker ... one of five children, growing up in Evansville, Ind. ... the 17th player from state of Michigan to suit up for Notre Dame, second only to Indiana's 20 residents on the Fighting Irish all-time roster ... some other notable Michiganders who have played basketball at Notre Dame include: Jeannine Augustin (Rochester/starting point guard on 1997 NCAA Final Four team), Letitia Bowen (Buchanan/holder of school's career rebounding average record at 8.8 rpg.) and Julie Henderson (Ann Arbor/ranks among program's all-team leaders with 130 games played) ... also coached U13 girls' basketball team near home ... competed in gymnastics for four years ... has read every book in the "Twilight" series ... currently enrolled in Notre Dame's College of Arts and Letters as an industrial design major ... some other Fighting Irish players who have worn No. 44 include Heidi Bunek and Meaghan Leahy.