Dec. 30, 2010
SEATTLE (AP) - Freshman Kayla McBride scored 20 points in a reserve role and No. 16 Notre Dame shot well, defeating Loyola Marymount 91-47 Thursday in the State Farm Holiday Hoops Classic at Seattle's KeyArena. With the victory, the Fighting Irish also recorded the 700th win in school history, becoming the 32nd NCAA Division I program to reach that milestone.
Notre Dame (11-3) and Loyola Marymount (6-8) each won their tournament openers Wednesday. The tournament didn't officially bill this as the championship game.
McBride hit 9-for-14 and Notre Dame made nearly 58 percent of its tries overall. Senior Devereaux Peters scored 14 of her 16 points in the first half as the Irish pulled away.
The Lions continue to adjust to playing without leading scorer Alex Cowling, out for the year with a foot injury. Renahy Young scored 21 and Candice Nichols had 17.
POST GAME NOTES: Notre Dame is the second NCAA Division I school in as many days (and fifth this season) to earn its 700th all-time women's basketball victory, following Saint Joseph's (Pa.), which did so on Wednesday (becoming the first Catholic institution to hit that mark) -- the Fighting Irish now are 700-305 (.697) in 34 seasons of varsity competition ... Notre Dame has won 26 of its last 29 regular-season tournament games, including eight in a row (and all five this season) ... although the State Farm Holiday Hoops Classic didn't officially declare a tournament champion (the matchups were pre-determined because Gonzaga and Loyola Marymount could not play each other as members of the West Coast Conference since they will meet later on in league play), Thursday's game with LMU was a de-facto title clash ... senior forward Devereaux Peters was voted as the tournament Most Valuable Player, while junior guard Natalie Novosel made the all-tournament team ... the Fighting Irish registered their seventh win this season by 35 points or more, extending their school record in that category ... Thursday's win also was the eighth 30-point triumph this year, two shy of the school record in that department (set in 2000-01) ... the Fighting Irish topped the 90-point mark for the seventh time this season, tying the school record set on three other occasions (1996-97, 1998-99 and 2007-08) ... Notre Dame came into this week's tournament having never won in the city of Seattle (and just once in six previous games in the state of Washington), but leaves the Emerald City with two victories ... the Fighting Irish also improve to 7-1 (.875) all-time against WCC schools ... Notre Dame is 2-0 all-time against Loyola Marymount, having also won 78-40 back on Jan. 3, 1987, in Los Angeles ... the LMU series was the last of four non-conference rivalries that Notre Dame renewed this year following a hiatus of a decade or longer -- the others were UCLA (12 years), Butler (11 years) and Creighton (29 years) ... the Fighting Irish move to 23-15 (.605) all-time against California schools, including a 21-7 (.750) record in the 24-year Muffet McGraw era ... Notre Dame rises to 20-14 (.588) all-time in its final game before the start of the new year (12-11, .522 away from South Bend), with a 17-7 (.708) record in the McGraw era and its current "end-of-December" winning streak stretching to four games (2007-08 to present) ... the Fighting Irish shot .578 from the floor, their second-best field goal percentage of the season (.633 vs. Creighton on Dec. 11 at Purcell Pavilion) and the third time in the past four games Notre Dame has shot better than 57 percent from the field ... the Fighting Irish scored 52 second-half points, two shy of their season-high for a half (54 in the second half vs. IUPUI on Nov. 26 at Purcell Pavilion) ... for the second consecutive game, a Notre Dame player posted a new career scoring high, as freshman guard Kayla McBride scored a career-high 20 points, topping her previous best of 14 points vs. Morehead State on Nov. 15 at Purcell Pavilion (Novosel scored a career-high 27 points vs. Gonzaga on Wednesday night) ... McBride also tied her career high with six rebounds, having hit that total two other times (the last on Dec. 20 at Valparaiso) ... sophomore guard Kaila Turner dished out a career-high six assists, one more than her previous best set on three occasions (the last on Dec. 11 vs. Creighton) ... Peters narrowly missed matching the second-best shooting performance in school history (9-for-9), last set by Crystal Erwin on Dec. 11, 2004, vs. Washington at Purcell Pavilion ... senior forward Becca Bruszewski's 6-for-6 effort was a career best but one short of the minimum number of made shots for inclusion in the school's record books.