WBB Minute – McGraw Earns 700
Updated BIG EAST Notes
Three league games, all involving ranked teams, were on the schedule Tuesday night and all three ranked teams won.
No. 2/3 Notre Dame (21-1, 9-0 BIG EAST) beat RV/RV Villanova 59-52 and secured career win No. 700 for head coach Muffet McGraw. She became the 13th coach in Division I history to reach the 700-victory plateau and improved her career record to 700-257 in 31 years coaching (612-216 in 26 years at Notre Dame).
''You know, I feel so blessed, I'm so incredibly lucky to be coaching at Notre Dame and to be surrounded by such class people, all of the players that have come through the last 25 years, the administration, all of the assistant coaches, everyone at Notre Dame has treated me so well,'' McGraw said. ''It did mean more winning at Villanova. My whole family was here and we had about 100 people here, and it was so exciting to see so much green. There was a lot of green out there. It did kind of feel like a home game.''
Junior Natalie Achonwa scored 19 points and had 11 rebounds to lead the Irish. Junior Kayla McBride added 16 points and senior Skylar Diggins had 14, shooting 4–of-17 from the field. In addition, the Irish have won 16 in a row, the second-longest stretch in the nation behind only Baylor (18).
Villanova (16-6, 5-4 BIG EAST) has lost three in a row, with two of the losses to then-No. 3/2 UConn and Notre Dame. The Wildcats play three of their next five games at home.
In addition, the BIG EAST has four active head coaches with 600+ wins, more than any other conference. Stringer leads the way with 898 career wins, followed by UConn’s Geno Auriemma at 825, McGraw with 700 and Villanova’s Harry Perretta at 633.
Elsewhere, No. 3/2 Connecticut (21-1, 8-1 BIG EAST) topped Marquette 94-37 at Gampel Pavilion. Six Huskies scored in double figures, including all five starters. Sophomore Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis led the Huskies with 22 points shooting 8-of-10 from the field and 5-of-6 from 3-point range. She is shooting 55-percent from the field and ranks fourth in the BIG EAST. Mosqueda-Lewis leads the league in 3-point shooting at 51-percent averaging 3.2 trifectas per game.
In her BIG EAST career (25 games), Mosqueda-Lewis is shooting 46-percent from the field and 42-percent from 3-point range. She also has totaled 67 3-pointers on 159 attempts. The league record for 3-point FG percentage in a career is 47-percent set by Sue Bird (1998-2002) who shot 47-percent (in 55 games).
Marquette (11-11, 3-6 BIG EAST) shot 25-percent from the field and got 11 points from freshman Brooklyn Pumroy.
In the Queen City, Orange seniors Kayla Alexander and Elashier Hall tallied 23 points apiece as No. 24/22 Syracuse (19-3, 7-2 BIG EAST) defeated Cincinnati 72-48 for its third straight win. Alexander shot 8-of-12 from the field and added five blocks. Hall matched her career-high, made 7-of-13 shots and surpassed 1,000 points for her career. She has totaled 1,020 points in her career. Cincinnati (8-14, 0-9 BIG EAST) has lost nine in a row.
Two league games are set for Wednesday.
Wednesday, Feb. 6
Providence at Pittsburgh 7 p.m.
Seton Hall at DePaul 8 p.m.
Material from interviews, school websites, the Associated Press wire service as well as league and team sources was used in this report.