Unfinished Business: Irish seniors want to reach Sweet 16

Sunday's 75-62 win over SMU was huge for the Notre Dame women's basketball team as they advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament in West Lafayette.

But the Irish are not satisfied yet.

Especially the seniors. There is one thing Charel Allen, Tulyah Gaines, Melissa D'Amico, and Amanda Tsipis have never done.

Play in a Sweet 16.

""Before we got here, they made it to the Sweet 16," Allen explained after the win over SMU. "I feel we are the class that jinxed Notre Dame because we haven't been there yet."

But we'll get there this year."

To get there, the Irish will have to defeat 4th-seeded Oklahoma Tuesday night at Mackey Arena. Tipoff is set for 9:30 EST.

""We get to keep playing," Gaines says with a smile. "That's all you want to do is keep on playing."

"I never want it to end. So I'm really excited."

Gaines and Allen ignited a 14-0 Irish run late in the game with the score tied at 57 to give Notre Dame the win.

A non-senior, sophomore Ashley Barlow was also huge during that stretch and throughout the game.

Barlow led the Irish with 20 points, 12 rebounds and 4 steals.

"We don't want their careers to end either," Barlow said as she sat next to Allen in the Irish locker room after Sunday's win.

"It's pretty exciting and we just want to keep it going."

Notre Dame has reached the Sweet 16 on six occasions. Head coach Muffet McGraw says its something really special.

"I would love for our seniors to experience a Sweet 16 because it would make for such a great moment in their basketball careers," McGraw said.

"But it's going to take a lot. We're going to have to play great defense and rebound. But it would be great for the seniors to go out that way."

The Irish will have to contain two of the nation's very best post players--the Paris twins-- in order to advance to the Sweet 16.


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