Women's Basketball

@ndwbb

Mar. 2, 1998

No. 2 Connecticut Too Strong for Notre Dame

Game Statistics

PISCATAWAY, N.J. (AP) - Nykesha Sales showed up for the semifinals of the Big East Tournament and so did the old Connecticut.

Freshman Svetlana Abrosimova scored eight of her 19 points in a game-opening 17-2 spurt and Connecticut forced 31 turnovers in a 73-53 victory against Notre Dame on Monday night.

It was the Huskies' third straight win since Sales ruptured her Achilles' tendon a little more than a week ago, but it was the first time Connecticut (30-2) looked dominant without their career leading scorer. The Huskies' wins against Villanova and West Virginia were by a combined margin of six points.

Against Notre Dame (20-9), Connecticut got help from everyone and dominated from the start. Stacy Hansmeyer had a career-high 21 points, Amy Duran added 15 and Rita Williams had seven points, seven assists and six steals. The 53 points were the fewest of the season for Notre Dame.

The Huskies will go for a fifth straight Big East Conference Tournament title and another automatic NCAA Tournament bid on Tuesday night against the winner of Monday's other semifinal between second-seeded Rutgers and third-seeded Miami.

Even if they lose, the Huskies are going to the NCAA Tournament.

The presence of Sales, who gained notoriety a week ago for being allowed to score her record-setting basket against Villanova after being injured, seemed to inspire the Huskies.

Wearing a Connecticut T-shirt and sitting next to coach Geno Auriemma's wife, Kathy, Sales was up on her feet from the start, clapping when Abrosimova scored on a layup off the opening tap and getting back up when Hansmeyer scored in the lane with 14:31 to go to make it 17-2.

The only time Notre Dame threatened to make it close was in the final minutes of the first half when Connecticut sent center Paige Sauer and Abrosimova to the bench with two fouls. Four straight points by Neile Ivey closed the gap to 33-23 at intermission.

Any hope Notre Dame had of coming back ended in the opening minutes of the second half when the Huskies scored the first eight points with Duran and Abrosimova, hitting 3s.

Center Ruth Riley led the Irish with 12 points, while Ivey had 10.

Event Calendar

Delta

February 1
W, 68-61
Duke
Durham, N.C. (Cameron Indoor Stadium)
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ESPN2 - Big Monday
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Live Stats
February 4
W, 82-46
North Carolina State
Notre Dame, Ind. (Purcell Pavilion)
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ESPN3
February 7
W, 66-61
Louisville
Louisville, Ky. (KFC Yum! Center)
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Pulse FM (96.9/92.1)/WatchND
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Live Stats
February 14
1:00 PM
Miami
Notre Dame, Ind. (Purcell Pavilion)

ACC-Regional Sports Networks package
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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
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February 22
7:00 PM
Florida State
Tallahassee, Fla. (Tucker Center)

ESPN2 - Big Monday
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February 25
7:00 PM
Clemson
Notre Dame, Ind. (Purcell Pavilion)

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February 27
1:00 PM
Boston College
Notre Dame, Ind. (Purcell Pavilion)

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Senior Day
March 2
TBA
ACC First Round
Greensboro, N.C. (Greensboro Coliseum)

ACC-Regional Sports Networks package
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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
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March 5
TBA
ACC Semifinals
Greensboro, N.C. (Greensboro Coliseum)

ESPNU
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March 6
TBA
ACC Championship
Greensboro, N.C. (Greensboro Coliseum)

ESPN
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March 18
TBA
NCAA First Round
Campus sites

ESPN/ESPN2
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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
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March 21
TBA
NCAA Second Round
Campus sites

ESPN/ESPN2
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March 25
TBA
NCAA Regional Semifinals
Selected sites

ESPN/ESPN2
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March 26
TBA
NCAA Regional Semifinals
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March 27
TBA
NCAA Regional Finals
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ESPN/ESPN2
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March 28
TBA
NCAA Regional Finals
Selected sites

ESPN/ESPN2
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April 3
TBA
NCAA National Semifinals
Indianapolis, Ind. (Bankers Life Fieldhouse)

ESPN/ESPN2
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April 5
TBA
NCAA National Championship
Indianapolis, Ind. (Bankers Life Fieldhouse)

ESPN
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