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    No. 16 Notre Dame Knocks Off Purdue, 72-51

    FIGHTING IRISH Skylar Diggins shoots over Purdue center Chelsea Jones in the first half. (Matt Cashore-US PRESSWIRE)
    FIGHTING IRISH
    Skylar Diggins shoots over Purdue center Chelsea Jones in the first half. (Matt Cashore-US PRESSWIRE)
    FIGHTING IRISH

    Dec. 5, 2010

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    NOTRE DAME, Ind. (AP) - Natalie Novosel scored 16 points and No. 16 Notre Dame celebrated the 1,000th game in school history with a 72-51 victory over Purdue on Sunday.

    The Irish (7-3) forced 24 turnovers and converted them into 29 points, and dominated in the paint, scoring 46 points while holding Purdue to only 29 inside.

    Brittany Rayburn had 16 points and a team-high seven rebounds for Purdue (6-2), which struggled from the field, shooting just 36.5 percent for the game. Courtney Moses scored 11.

    Purdue coach Sharon Versyp was visibly frustrated with her team's inability to take care of the ball and convert on the offensive end of the court.

    "We didn't execute anything - nothing. Every time I drew something up it didn't work. We played no defense, no communication, we weren't physical," Versyp said. "Our post players had some shots and they didn't finish, and Notre Dame did."

    Irish coach Muffet McGraw liked her team's focus on attacking opponents down low, but noticed plenty of things to work on in what she called an "ugly present" on her birthday.

    "We did get some scoring from the post, and that's what I was most concerned with," she said. "I was really happy with the way we ran the Princeton offense."

    Notre Dame had noticed early that they would be able to catch Purdue sleeping on backdoor cuts and off-the-ball screens, just like Princeton has done for years.

    "We weren't able to control the tempo of the game, and I think that that's something that you have to be able to do," Rayburn said.

    Moses had to deal with the Notre Dame press all afternoon.

    "We knew that Notre Dame was a team that thrived off getting their points off turnovers, fast break," she said, "and they took advantage of it," Moses said.

    Two of Purdue's starters went down early in the season, sophomore guard KK Houser and junior forward Drey Mingo, and the Boilermakers have been forced to adjust since.

    "Every player has to step up a little bit," Versyp said. "It's reality, we have ten kids, we've got make adjustments, and we have to become better."

     

     

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