Miami Suffers 69-53 Loss at No. 18/19 Notre Dame
CORAL GABLES, Fla. – The University of Miami women’s basketball team faced a 69-53 loss to No. 18/19 Notre Dame (19-5, 10-3 ACC), Thursday evening at Purcell Pavilion.
The veteran guards of graduate student Kelsey Marshall and seniors Mykea Gray and Karla Erjavec led the Hurricanes (12-10, 5-7 ACC) on offense, combining for 36 points. Marshall reached double-figures for the ninth consecutive game and 18th time this season with 18 points on the contest.
“[Purcell Pavilion] is a hard place to play and [Notre Dame] is a very talented team,” head coach Katie Meier said. “I thought their interior defense caused us to get shy around the rim and that really affected our offensive aggressiveness. We’ve won [scoring] 53 and won at 47 this year, so the offensive output isn’t shocking, but it’s almost impossible to hold Notre Dame to 50 and they did their job tonight.”
As a team, Miami knocked down 10 3-pointers in the contest, hitting 10-plus threes for the third time this season. Marshall led all Hurricanes with six, setting a new season high for single-game threes. The guard has recorded five-plus 3-pointers in five outings this year.
“Kelsey Marshall battled her tail off tonight,” Meier said. “She was courageous and a big-time player. Everyone else needs to have her guts and mentality and willingness to hunt shots.”
It took a couple possessions but the Hurricanes found their rhythm on offense, led by Marshall who kicked off Miami’s scoring with back-to-back 3-pointers. The Hurricanes took their only lead of the game at the 5:21 mark on a layup from graduate student Destiny Harden. However, the Fighting Irish responded with an 11-3 run to close the quarter up, 17-11.
The three-ball kept the Hurricanes within striking distance as Miami knocked down 42 percent (3-of-7) of its shots from beyond the arc in the second quarter. Gray’s 3-pointer at 8:28 in the frame cut to the lead to five, but Notre Dame shot 70 percent from the floor in the second to maintain its double-digit advantage heading into the locker room.
The shots continued to fall from beyond the arc for the Hurricanes in the third quarter as a three by Marshall at the 6:04 mark brought Miami’s 3-point total to seven. For every shot the Hurricanes made, Notre Dame responded with one of their own to keep the deficit hovering around the 10-point mark. The Fighting Irish extended its lead to 20 thanks to a pair of 3-pointers from Maddy Westbeld to close out the third.
The Hurricanes were down, but they couldn’t be counted out as they opened the final quarter on a 7-0 run to cut the lead. Harden accounted for four of the seven points, while Marshall knocked down her fifth 3-pointer of the evening. Despite shooting 54 percent and outscoring Notre Dame, 20-16 in the final 10 minutes, turnovers plagued the Hurricanes and they could not complete the comeback.
Miami returns home to the Watsco Center on Sunday to take on Florida State for the Hurricanes’ Pink Game, presented by Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center. Tipoff is set for 12 p.m. and the game will air on ACC Network.