Women's Basketball

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Women's Hoops Edged By Texas Tech, 69-65
Notre Dame forward Kelley Siemon tries to get past Texas Tech's Keitha Dickerson for the loose ball.
 
Notre Dame forward Kelley Siemon tries to get past Texas Tech's Keitha Dickerson for the loose ball.

March 25, 2000

Box Score

By TERESA M. WALKER
AP Sports Writer

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) - Texas Tech finished what Notre Dame started Saturday.

Aleah Johnson scored 18 points and Texas Tech rallied from a 17-0 deficit to beat Notre Dame 69-65 on Saturday in the NCAA Mideast Regional semifinals. The Lady Raiders answered that opening spurt with their own 17-0 run.

"I don't know if I've ever been in one that had that big a point swing, particularly not at this level," Texas Tech coach Marsha Sharp said. "You don't expect to have that many swings with that large a deficit."

It helped that the Lady Raiders (28-4) fell behind 11-2 in their second-round game against Tulane before pulling out a victory last weekend. Melinda Schmucker-Pharies said they never panicked.

"We knew that no matter what, 17 down, we still had the whole game ahead of us. We just had to come out and battle no matter what," she said.

Third-seeded Texas Tech will play top-seeded Tennessee, a 77-56 winner over Virginia, on Monday for a spot in the Final Four. The Lady Raiders advanced to their first regional championship since 1995.

Second-seeded Notre Dame (27-5) had won 23 of its last 25 games, which helped the Fighting Irish to a No. 5 ranking. They also had a decided height advantage inside thanks to All-American center Ruth Riley.

Notre Dame even scored the first 17 points of the game and led by as much as eight in the second half.

It wasn't enough.

The Lady Raiders pecked away at that lead with outside jumpers and finally took the momentum when Riley got into foul trouble.

"They never quit. They kept coming at us," Notre Dame coach Muffet McGraw said of the Lady Raiders' pressing defense.

"They got us out of our offense, and I think mentally we got out of the game. Mentally, we saw the pressure, and we just backed down from it. That was a problem. We weren't able to execute."

 

 

Texas Tech tied the game at 46 on a 3-pointer by Melinda Schmucker-Pharies midway through the half. Johnson then took over, scoring eight of the next nine points. Her inside basket with 8:12 left gave the Lady Raiders their first lead of the game at 50-48.

Riley tied it at 50 but picked up her fourth foul seconds later. Katrisa O'Neal hit a free throw, and Johnson scored twice for a 55-50 lead that Texas Tech never lost.

Pierson finished with 13 points and nine rebounds for Texas Tech. Keitha Dickerson added 12, and Schmucker-Pharies had 11 and seven assists.

Riley, who wound up fouling out of four Irish losses, wasn't happy with some of the calls.

"I don't think I really fouled anybody. I think being 6-5 makes it obvious when I do have contact, and maybe it makes it easier to make calls like that," she said.

Notre Dame didn't get much help from Alicia Ratay, the Big East's freshman of the year. She only had two points. Riley had 19 points before fouling out, and Danielle Green added 15. Julie Henderson and Ericka Haney each had 10.

Riley jumpstarted Notre Dame with nine points in the Fighting Irish's opening run, which was helped by seven turnovers by the Lady Raiders in the first six minutes.

Texas Tech didn't score until 13:06 on a breakaway layup by Pierson, and that woke up the Lady Raiders. They got back into the game by scoring the next 15 and tying the game at 17 before Notre Dame went back up and led 28-23 at halftime.

Event Calendar

Delta

February 1
W, 68-61
Duke
Durham, N.C. (Cameron Indoor Stadium)
RECAP

ESPN2 - Big Monday
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Live Stats
February 4
W, 82-46
North Carolina State
Notre Dame, Ind. (Purcell Pavilion)
RECAP

WatchND
ESPN3
February 7
W, 66-61
Louisville
Louisville, Ky. (KFC Yum! Center)
RECAP

Pulse FM (96.9/92.1)/WatchND
WatchND
WatchESPN
Live Stats
February 14
1:00 PM
Miami
Notre Dame, Ind. (Purcell Pavilion)

ACC-Regional Sports Networks package
Pulse FM (96.9/92.1)/WatchND
WatchND
Pink Zone/Play4Kay Game
February 18
7:00 PM
Wake Forest
Winston-Salem, N.C. (Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum)

Pulse FM (96.9/92.1)/WatchND
WatchND
February 22
7:00 PM
Florida State
Tallahassee, Fla. (Tucker Center)

ESPN2 - Big Monday
Pulse FM (96.9/92.1)/WatchND
WatchND
February 25
7:00 PM
Clemson
Notre Dame, Ind. (Purcell Pavilion)

Pulse FM (96.9/92.1)/WatchND
WatchND
February 27
1:00 PM
Boston College
Notre Dame, Ind. (Purcell Pavilion)

Pulse FM (96.9/92.1)/WatchND
WatchND
Senior Day
March 2
TBA
ACC First Round
Greensboro, N.C. (Greensboro Coliseum)

ACC-Regional Sports Networks package
Pulse FM (96.9/92.1)/WatchND
March 3
TBA
ACC Second Round
Greensboro, N.C. (Greensboro Coliseum)

ACC-Regional Sports Networks package
Pulse FM (96.9/92.1)/WatchND
March 4
TBA
ACC Quarterfinals
Greensboro, N.C. (Greensboro Coliseum)

ACC-Regional Sports Networks package
Pulse FM (96.9/92.1)/WatchND
March 5
TBA
ACC Semifinals
Greensboro, N.C. (Greensboro Coliseum)

ESPNU
Pulse FM (96.9/92.1)/WatchND
March 6
TBA
ACC Championship
Greensboro, N.C. (Greensboro Coliseum)

ESPN
Pulse FM (96.9/92.1)/WatchND
March 18
TBA
NCAA First Round
Campus sites

ESPN/ESPN2
Pulse FM (96.9/92.1)/WatchND
March 19
TBA
NCAA First Round
Campus sites

ESPN/ESPN2
Pulse FM (96.9/92.1)/WatchND
March 20
TBA
NCAA Second Round
Campus sites

ESPN/ESPN2
Pulse FM (96.9/92.1)/WatchND
March 21
TBA
NCAA Second Round
Campus sites

ESPN/ESPN2
Pulse FM (96.9/92.1)/WatchND
March 25
TBA
NCAA Regional Semifinals
Selected sites

ESPN/ESPN2
Pulse FM (96.9/92.1)/WatchND
March 26
TBA
NCAA Regional Semifinals
Selected sites

ESPN/ESPN2
Pulse FM (96.9/92.1)/WatchND
March 27
TBA
NCAA Regional Finals
Selected sites

ESPN/ESPN2
Pulse FM (96.9/92.1)/WatchND
March 28
TBA
NCAA Regional Finals
Selected sites

ESPN/ESPN2
Pulse FM (96.9/92.1)/WatchND
April 3
TBA
NCAA National Semifinals
Indianapolis, Ind. (Bankers Life Fieldhouse)

ESPN/ESPN2
Pulse FM (96.9/92.1)/WatchND
April 5
TBA
NCAA National Championship
Indianapolis, Ind. (Bankers Life Fieldhouse)

ESPN
Pulse FM (96.9/92.1)/WatchND

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