Nov. 25, 2008
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) -- Brittany Mallory scored a career-high 19 points and No. 14 (AP)/No. 10 (ESPN/USA Today/WBCA) Notre Dame jumped on visiting Georgia Southern early in an 85-36 win on Tuesday night.
Notre Dame (4-0), coming off a 102-54 win Sunday at Boston College, scored 37 points off of 24 Georgia Southern turnovers and harassed the Eagles into shot clock trouble all night.
J'Lisia Ogburn, Ashley Rivens and Ashley Melson each scored eight points to lead the Eagles (3-2), who shot just 21.4 percent from the field.
The Irish quickly took control with a 23-3 run early in the first half to take an 18-point lead. Mallory and Natalie Novosel came off the Irish bench to score 11 of those points during the stretch that was highlighted by Notre Dame's defense.
POST GAME NOTES: Notre Dame posts back-to-back wins by at least 48 points for the first time in school history ... the Irish also notch their third consecutive 35-point win, which likewise, is a first in the 32-year history of the program ... the 49-point margin of victory is the largest for Notre Dame in a home game since March 17, 2001, when the Irish defeated Alcorn State at home, 98-49 in the first round of the NCAA Tournament (an event they eventually won to secure the program's first national championship); ironically, two All-Americans from that 2000-01 Notre Dame squad were in the building on Tuesday night -- Niele Ivey (now in her second season as an Irish assistant coach) and Ruth Riley (enjoying a Thanksgiving holiday visit to her hometown of nearby Macy, Ind., following her eighth WNBA campaign in which she helped lead the San Antonio Silver Stars to the Western Conference title and the WNBA Finals) ... Notre Dame's defense allowed just 36 points, the fewest given up by the Irish in a game since March 1, 2005, when Notre Dame earned a 41-35 win at Seton Hall; it's the fewest opponent points at the Joyce Center since Jan. 2, 2005, when the Irish downed SHU, 54-33 ... Notre Dame went on a staggering 27-0 run midway through the second half, the second-longest run of consecutive points in school history -- on Jan. 18, 1997 against Pittsburgh at the Joyce Center, the Irish went on a 31-0 run in the first half en route to a 65-49 win ... Notre Dame held Georgia Southern to a .214 field goal percentage, the lowest by an Irish opponent since Dec. 22, 2001, when Marquette shot just .185 (10-of-54) in a 60-33 Irish win at the Joyce Center ... Georgia Southern did not have a single player score in double figures, the first time the Notre Dame defense has managed that feat since Nov. 20, 2007, when Central Michigan's leading scorer had eight points in a 94-41 Irish win in Mount Pleasant, Mich. ... for the second time in four games this season, every Notre Dame player in uniform got into the scoring column (also vs. Evansville on Nov. 19) ... through four games, Notre Dame has not trailed by more than three points (one possession) at any time, and has been either tied or ahead for good before reaching the first media timeout (under 16 minutes) of the first half ... sophomore guard Brittany Mallory scored a career-high 19 points, topping her old high-water mark of 15 set on Jan. 19, 2008, at Georgetown; Mallory had narrowly missed her career-high point total two days ago at Boston College, finishing with 14 points ... junior guard/tri-captain Ashley Barlow extended her streak of double-digit scoring games to nine, dating back to last year; she also plucked a season-high eight rebounds on Tuesday ... freshman forward Erica Solomon scored in double figures for the second time in as many games, while adding a season-best five rebounds to her 12 points (in 19 minutes) ... prior to the game, the Irish learned they had risen to No. 10 in the newest ESPN/USA Today/WBCA coaches' poll, their highest ranking in that poll since Dec. 6, 2005, when they also were 10th after getting off to a 6-0 start.