Notre Dame Pulls Away From Miami in ACCWBB Semifinals

Irish return to conference title game with 78-67 win over Hurricanes.

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Greensboro, N.C. (AP) - Brianna Turner scored 17 points and No. 2 Notre Dame took over late in the third quarter to beat No. 21 Miami 78-67 in Saturday's semifinals at the Atlantic Coast Conference women's tournament.

Lindsay Allen added 14 points for the top-seeded Fighting Irish (30-1), including two straight baskets during that third-quarter burst. Notre Dame trailed 47-44 with about 6 1/2 minutes left in the third before pushing back in front and making six straight shots to finally stretch out the lead as the fifth-seeded Hurricanes (24-8) began to fade.

Notre Dame improved to 56-1 against ACC opponents since joining the league in the 2013-14 season and 8-0 in the tournament. The Irish will play for a third straight tournament title on Sunday.

Jessica Thomas scored 17 points for Miami, which was in its second semifinal and trying to reach its first title game.

Miami got off to a strong start and frustrated the Irish for the first 25 minutes. But after Erykah Davenport's three-point play put the Hurricanes ahead, they managed one basket over a 9-minute stretch just as the Fighting Irish started putting together their own flurry.

Mychal Johnson answered Davenport with a tying 3-pointer, and then Allen hit two straight shots to put the Irish ahead for good. Her second shot started that 6-for-6 burst, with Madison Cable ending the run by scoring a layup off a steal to push the lead to 63-53 with 8:52 left.

This one looked nothing like the only regular-season meeting three weeks ago, when Notre Dame led by 12 after the first quarter and by 19 at half on the way to a 90-69 home win. The Hurricanes knocked down four 3-pointers in the opening three minutes Saturday to get a jolt of early momentum, and then pushed back when Notre Dame went ahead by eight at the point the Fighting Irish often turn games into blowouts.

Fittingly, Miami responded with 3s — both from Thomas — and trailed just 39-38 at halftime.

TIP-INS

Miami: The Hurricanes remain the only ACC team to beat the Fighting Irish since Notre Dame joined the league. That came in January 2015. . Leading scorer Adrienne Motley scored 10 on 3-for-13 shooting. . Miami shot 41 percent and made 9 of 23 3-pointers, though only one after halftime. ... Miami was called for 21 fouls, many coming early.

Notre Dame: Cable also scored 14. . Notre Dame shot 48 percent. . The Fighting Irish made 21 of 28 free throws.

UP NEXT

Miami will play in the NCAA Tournament.

Notre Dame faces the Syracuse-Louisville winner in Sunday's championship game.