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NCAAW Elite Eight Recap (Day 2): Notre Dame outlasts Stanford’s early push to reach Final Four

Notre Dame advances to its second consecutive Final Four appearance after defeating Stanford, 84-68, led by Jackie Young’s 25 points and 10 rebounds.

NCAA Womens Basketball: NCAA Tournament-Chicago Regional-Notre Dame vs Stanford
Jackie Young’s 25 points and 10 rebounds helped spark Notre Dame’s 84-68 victory over Stanford.
David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

On Monday night, Notre Dame escaped a close call against Stanford, which jumped out to an early lead in the first half.

The Fighting Irish defeated the Cardinal, 84-68, in the second day of Elite Eight play. Last night’s win allows Notre Dame to continue its title defense.

Early in the game, Stanford did an excellent job of taking care of the ball and containing the Fighting Irish’s fast-break opportunities. Both Notre Dame (44 percent) and Stanford (39.7 percent) shot relatively well from the field.

Kiana Williams (20 points and 3 rebounds), DiJonai Carrington (18 points and 6 rebounds) and Alanna Smith (14 points and 8 rebounds) carried Stanford throughout the game and battled hard until the clock ran out.

Notre Dame struggled from the three-point line, finishing the game shooting 30 percent from three. But Stanford had early success in the game from the three-point line and would finish the game shooting 45.5 percent from long range.

Needless to say, Stanford’s 12 turnovers would come back to haunt them as the Fighting Irish capitalized on them. Arike Ogunbowale struggled early to find a consistent rhythm against Stanford but Jackie Young stepped up big with 25 points, 10 rebounds and 3 assists.

Later on, Ogunbowale would hit some key shots and free throws to separate Notre Dame from Stanford in order to win. But Young helped carry this team into the fourth quarter to have a chance to win the game.

Both teams got after it on the defensive end of the floor but the turnovers by Stanford allowed the Fighting Irish to climb back in the game and take control. The veteran presence of Ogunbowale, Young, Marina Mabrey and Brianna Turner has been a huge boost in this year’s tournament for Notre Dame and head coach Muffet McGraw.

After Monday’s win, Notre Dame is set to face a No. 2 Connecticut Huskies team that defeated the Fighting Irish back in December, 89-71.

NCAAW Tournament game information

Final Four

When: Friday, April 5, at 7 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. ET

Where: Amalie Arena, Tampa, FL

How to watch: ESPN2, WatchESPN

National Championship

When: Sunday, April 7, at 6 p.m. ET

Where: Amalie Arena, Tampa, FL

How to watch: ESPN, WatchESPN

More ways to watch the games

Want to watch in person? Elite Eight and Final Four tickets can be found on the websites of the hosting arenas, or here.