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ND Women’s Basketball

Irish gear up for home opener against Northwestern

| Wednesday, November 15, 2023

Mary Votava | The Observer
Notre Dame players celebrate after the Irish defeated then No. 3 UConn at Purcell Pavilion on Dec. 4, 2022.

On Wednesday night, the Northwestern Wildcats visit Purcell Pavilion to take on Notre Dame women’s basketball. Northwestern comes into the game at 2-0 on the season, with wins against Illinois-Chicago and Omaha. In both games, Northwestern scored more than 85 points. The Wildcats return their top scorer from last year, forward Caileigh Walsh. Last season, Walsh averaged 12.1 points per game. Wednesday’s matchup is not part of the Big Ten-ACC Challenge, which came to a close at the end of last year.

The No. 16 Irish enter the game after handily defeating NJIT 104-57 on the road on Sunday. Hannah Hidalgo showed out in front of her friends, family and even her high school team. The freshman guard from Haddonfield, New Jersey, delivered an impressive stat line of 26 points, 12 steals, 6 rebounds and 6 assists. Hidalgo tied former Irish star Marina Mabrey for the most steals in a single game in school history.

Junior guard Sonia Citron also impressed, matching Hidalgo’s 26 points while shooting 10-of-11 from the field and draining her sole attempt from three.

Look for Irish head coach Niele Ivey to give some minutes to her second team, including senior forward Natalija Marshall, graduate student forward Becky Obinma and freshman guard Emma Risch. All three saw double-digit minutes against NJIT.

Notre Dame will welcome freshman guard Cassandre Prosper back after she missed Sunday’s game against NJIT. Prosper traveled to Colombia to play in the FIBA Olympic Pre-Qualifying Tournament as a member of the Canada Senior Women’s National Team. Canada won all three games it played.

The Irish last played Northwestern in 2022 in Evanston. Notre Dame won that matchup 92-58. Citron scored 24 points, and nine players on the roster scored. The Irish pulled down 58 rebounds, last season’s high. The last time Notre Dame played Northwestern at home was in 1987, an Irish victory in the Wildcats’ sole trip to South Bend.

Wednesday’s game is Notre Dame’s first of the season at home, and the Irish will look to continue their streak of winning 28 straight home openers. Early arriving students can receive a free t-shirt and glow stick. The game will tip off at 7 p.m. on ACC Network.

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About Jake Miller

Jake is the President of NDTV. On occasion, he contributes to The Observer, primarily covering football and women's basketball.

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