Women's Basketball 2015 NCAA Tournament Oklahoma City Round of 16 Game Breakdowns

Notre Dame Women's College Basketball

Oklahoma City Region Round of 16 Game Breakdowns


#2 Baylor vs. #3 Iowa, 7:30 p.m. Friday

The first of the two matchups at Chesapeake Arena pits the Bears against Iowa. It is hard to believe this is the first meeting between the two schools, but Baylor and Iowa have never met prior to this regional semifinal matchup. This is Iowa’s first trip to the Sweet 16 since 1996, when it lost to Vanderbilt. The last time the Hawkeyes won a Sweet 16 matchup was 1993, when they defeated Auburn. Iowa has a couple of potent weapons in Melissa Dixon and Samantha Logic. Dixon leads the nation in 3-pointers per game at 3.7, so look for the Hawkeyes to turn to Dixon often when it comes time for the perimeter shot. Don’t be surprised either if Logic feeds her the ball. She is third in the nation with 7.9 assists per game, but Baylor’s Niya Johnson is the leader at 8.7. What could tip the scales toward Baylor? First off, the game is in Oklahoma City, which is a lot closer to Baylor’s Waco campus than Iowa City. Baylor defeated Northwestern State 77-36 and Arkansas 73-44 to reach the Sweet 16 level. Iowa survived a scare against American but won 75-67, and the Hawkeyes recovered from there for an 88-70 victory over Miami (Fla.). Nina Davis, Baylor’s sophomore forward, averages 20.9 points and 8.3 rebounds per game. Although Iowa did well enough to reach the regional semifinals, the Hawkeyes’ luck likely runs out here. Baylor is just too strong and potent and should advance to Sunday’s final.


#1 Notre Dame vs. #4 Stanford, 10 p.m. Friday

You would think these two perennial rivals would have faced each other recently, right? It’s a good thing you didn’t say yes. The last time these two schools met, the Purcell Pavilion was called the Joyce Center and these players weren’t even born yet. It was November 24, 1991, when Stanford beat Notre Dame 88-76. Notre Dame is running up against opponents it hasn’t seen in a long time during this season. The Irish beat Saint Joseph’s in the teams’ first meeting since December 1990 and also polished off Montana in their first game since 1986. Notre Dame blew out Montana 77-43 in the first round and then had a considerably more difficult time against DePaul. Still, the Irish prevailed 79-67. Look for Jewell Loyd, the second Notre Dame player to amass 700 points in a season, to lead a potent offense. Loyd averages 20.1 points a game, while Brianna Turner (13.8) and Taya Reimer (10.2) are also there and Lindsay Allen (9.9) is so close. Stanford defeated CSUN 73-60 and Oklahoma 86-76 to reach the Sweet 16, guided by guards Lili Thompson (13.8) and Amber Orrange (13.3). Look out for Taylor Greenfield, who averaged 3.7 points during the first 30 games of the season but has a 12.8 average in the last five games while coming off the bench. One ominous note for Stanford… it is Friday, and Notre Dame is 5-0 in games played on this day. All bets are off because it’s tournament time, but Notre Dame should bring an end to the Stanford season with a double-digit win.


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