TAMPA BAY (WNDU) - The Notre Dame players told the media yesterday plain and simple - the key to victory tonight is to keep their composure. That was something the Irish lacked when they played the Huskies earlier in the season
"I think we need to control the things that we can control," Irish guard Marina Mabrey said. "I think we got caught up in a couple of calls made by the refs and thinking that we could reverse the call or change it by acting like that but obviously that’s not the way to act in any game. I think it’s harder to keep your composure in such a high emotion game so keeping our composure this time will be key to winning the game.”
While the 18 point loss Notre Dame suffered to UConn in December might seem like a blowout, the game was actually a lot closer than you may think.
Heading into the 4th quarter, the Irish trailed by only six points, but then chaos ensued. Irish guard Arike Ogunbowale got into it with UConn head coach Geno Auriemma and received a technical foul and then it all went south.
"It’s a game of runs so you have to stay grounded and ready," Ogunbowale said. "Like I said it’s a game of runs. They’re going to score. We have to respond. They have to respond so like I said we just have to go out there and play basketball."
After that game, Muffet McGraw said Notre Dame’s lack of composure didn’t give them a chance to win. The Irish learned their lesson and now know keeping their poise against the Huskies will play a big factor against UConn tonight.
“I think over the course of the season we have become more mature," Irish forward Brianna Turner said. "We know what is expected of us and and I think we’ve held each other accountable and to higher standards."
There you have it. It seems like Coach McGraw really coached the Irish up on keeping their composure this week