Irish Soar Past Gryphons in Christmas Themed Exhibition, 92-61

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NOTRE DAME, Ind. - (WNDU) - Notre Dame scored the first six points of the contest before jumping out to a 15-7 lead. Next, Guelph fired off a 9-0 run to claim its first lead of the game before a Nicole Benz bucket gave the Irish a 17-16 lead at the end of the period. Gilbert and Walker combined for 11
points in the quarter.

Down 28-26 at the 6:09 mark in the second, Katie Cole ignited an Irish 17-0 run over three minutes and 15 seconds. Notre Dame ultimately outscored the Gryphons 22-4 over the final five minutes of the half, connecting on 9-of-10 field goals in that span to take a commanding
48-32 lead. The offensive surge was highlighted by eight points from Cole.

Gilbert led at the midway point with 14 points, followed by eight points each from Cole, Brunelle and Walker, then seven from Peoples.

The Irish outscored the Gryphons 22-13 in the third, shooting 10-of-17 for the quarter. Peoples led the scoring for the period with eight points. In fact, Gilbert (19 pts), Peoples (15 pts), Walker (14 pts) and Cole (10 pts) were all in double-figures heading into the fourth.

Gilbert, Peoples and Walker kept the offense flowing in the fourth, as the trio combined for a 13-2 scoring run, building an 85-51 advantage. Over the last couple of minutes, all four walk-ons joined Cole on the court as the building erupted for Katie Keyes’ first collegiate
made field goal, bringing us to the 92-61 final.

The Irish defense forced 30 Guelph turnovers, resulting in 27 Notre Dame points. In addition, the Irish tallied 58 of their points in the paint. All-in-all, Notre Dame shot 52.8 percent (38-of-72) from the floor.

“We are making baby steps in signs of improvement. I’ve seen it individually, but as a team, we still have a ways to go,” Karen & Kevin Keyes Family Head Coach Muffet McGraw said. “We have a great opportunity entering conference play 0-0. We have to come out and bring our best game. Our backs are against the wall. We have the fourth toughest schedule in the country and we’ve been in every game minus one.”

The Irish head home for a short Christmas break before returning to Notre Dame to kick off ACC play before the new year. The Fighting Irish play host to Clemson on Sunday, Dec. 29, at 4 p.m. ET on RSN.