On this day in Notre Dame History: Irish Women’s Basketball win first national championship

Published: Apr. 1, 2021 at 6:30 PM EDT
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SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WNDU) - Do you remember what were doing 20 years ago today? Well if you are an Irish fan, you were probably glued to your television watching the National Championship.

It’s been 20 years since the Notre Dame Women’s Basketball team were cutting down nets in St. Louis to celebrate their National Championship.

It was a battle of the Hoosier State on the national level.

Notre Dame coming away victorious defeating the Purdue Boilermakers 68-66 to claim the program’s first national title.

Two decades later, the team hasn’t been able to get together to celebrate due to the pandemic, but we caught up with a pair of national champions to relive that moment of being on top of the world.

“Just the whole aura of being at the Final Four,” 2001 head coach Muffet McGraw said. “You know being at the Final Four from the moment you get off the plane in St. Louis which is Niele’s hometown. Everything was just so exciting. And of course there was no social media there. So there weren’t a lot selfies. We actually had to rely on Mike Bennett to take all the pictures for us. You couldn’t see the end of the game until you got home and put that VCR in.”

“Just being able to share and run off the court in Coach Kevin McGuff hands, arms really for winning the National Championship in my hometown,” 2001 team member and now Notre Dame Women’s Basketball coach Niele Ivey said. “So that will always be a memory of mine that will always be near and dear to my heart. Just being a apart of the championship, just finally doing it. Just winning in that form and celebrating on the court in front of downtown you know 15 minutes away from my home.”

Also three years ago, Notre Dame won their second national title. So April first is definitely kind to the Blue and Gold.

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