NCAA Women

American, Arizona State Previews – Notre Dame Fighting Irish – Official Athletics Website

American, Arizona State Previews – Notre Dame Fighting Irish – Official Athletics Website

BIMINI, Bahamas — Notre Dame is set to leave snowy South Bend for warmer temperatures just as the Irish are really beginning to heat up on the basketball court. 

The nation’s seventh-ranked squad is set for matchups against American (0-3) and Arizona State (4-0) this week as part of the 2022 Goombay Splash just off the coast of South Florida in Bimini. The matchup against the Eagles will be Thursday, Nov. 24 at 4:15 p.m. ET, while the game against the Sun Devils will take place either Friday or Saturday depending upon Thursday’s results. LSU, George Mason and UAB will also be in the Bahamas for the tournament. 

The Irish are coming off of their most complete performance to date, a 95-60 drubbing of Ball State on Sunday. Six Notre Dame players scored in double figures, including career highs from freshman KK Bransford (16 points and six rebounds) and graduate transfer Jenna Brown (10 points). 

Notre Dame currently leads the ACC with 91.3 points per game, a mark which ranks fourth nationally. 

The Irish will see a struggling American team on Thursday, one which has yet to notch a victory in head coach Tiffany Coll’s first season. While they played George Washington close on Nov. 17, that contest was sandwiched between big losses to DePaul and Virginia.

Kayla Henning and Emily Johns lead the way for the group out of the nation’s capital with 12.3 points per contest. Henning had 18 against the Cavaliers.

Where the Eagles have really struggled is on the defensive side of the ball; American is allowing 79 points per game, which currently ranks last in the Patriot League. They have, however, defended the three decently well, holding opponents to just a 22.2 percent success rate. Notre Dame has been solid on the other side of that category as the Irish currently rank 17th nationally (40.6 percent) in three-point percentage.

The Eagles last game against a ranked team came in last year’s NCAA Tournament when they fell to Michigan by a score of 74-39. Thursday will be the first time Notre Dame and American face off, and the 4:15 p.m. ET tip can be streamed on FloHoops.

The Sun Devils are 4-0 and coming off of a narrow overtime victory (83-77) over New Mexico on Nov. 20. They came out of the gate hot, going 9-16 from the field to start before slow second and third quarters. Notre Dame’s takeaway from that game is that Arizona State can score, and they can score quickly, and they don’t give up. The Irish had issues closing out games in…

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