Notre Dame Takes First Step In Title Defense

Irish top Miami in ACC quarterfinals, avenge regular-season loss

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GREENSBORO, N.C. (AP) -- Jewell Loyd scored 16 points and No. 2 Notre Dame beat Miami 77-61 on Friday in an Atlantic Coast Conference quarterfinal.

Brianna Turner had 13 points and 10 rebounds for the top-seeded Irish (29-2), who earned their 15th straight win. Taya Reimer and Madison Cable each scored 13.

The defending league tournament champions avenged their only loss to an ACC team in two years in the league and held on after a late 15-4 run to advance to the semifinals. The Irish will face 16th-ranked and fourth-seeded Duke (21-9) on Saturday.

Jessica Thomas scored a career-high 24 points and Jassany Williams had 16 for the eighth-seeded Hurricanes (19-12).

Adrienne Motley, who averages nearly 17 points, finished with just five on 2-of-8 shooting.

Kathryn Westbeld had 10 points for the Irish, who held the Hurricanes to 1 of 10 shooting over 6½ minutes down the stretch to improve to 5-0 in ACC tournament games.

Led by Loyd, the ACC's player of the year, and Turner, its freshman of the year, they haven't lost since Miami handed them their only ACC setback on Jan. 8.

In that 78-63 loss in Coral Gables, Motley scored a career-high 32 and Williams blocked nine shots.

Miami threatened to make it 2 for 2 after coming within 48-43 on Thomas' drive with 13½ minutes left.

Lindsay Allen converted a three-point play to start the decisive run, and Cable made a key 3 before Turner converted a three-point play to give Notre Dame its largest lead, 63-47, with 9:05 remaining.


Miami: The Hurricanes were denied just their second semifinal berth since joining the ACC 10 years ago.

Notre Dame: The Irish have the top seed in a conference tournament for the fourth straight year. They also were the No. 1 seeds in the Big East tournaments in 2012 and '13.


Notre Dame: Plays No. 16 Duke on Saturday in an ACC tournament semifinal.

Miami: Awaits a possible at-large NCAA tournament berth or plays in the WNIT for the second straight year.