BIG EAST women’s basketball teams went 3-1 on Monday night, led by No. 17/16 Notre Dame’s win over Valparaiso. Louisville and Pittsburgh also won, while USF lost.
The Irish (9-3) rolled over Valpo 94-43 racing out to a 49-23 halftime lead. Junior Natalie Novosel scored 18 points, while freshman Natalie Achonwa and senior Brittany Mallory added 12 apiece to help Notre Dame.
The Irish had 23 steals and led by as many as 50 in the second half. ND moved to 24-0 all-time against Valparaiso with an 11-0 series record on the road.
Louisville (9-5) knocked off Nebraska 65-51 in the final day of the Duel in the Desert tournament held in Las Vegas. The Cardinals were led by freshman Shoni Schimmel, who scored a game-high 22 points.
Nebraska senior Dominique Kelley had her streak of 109 consecutive starts snapped, after being forced to the sideline with an injury. Louisville took full advantage of Kelley's absence, forcing 19 first-half turnovers with full-court pressure. The Cardinals turned those turnovers into 23 points.
Nebraska lost all three games of the Duel in the Desert tournament and returns to action on Dec. 30 against USF. The Cornhuskers went 32-2 last season.
USF (9-5) lost to Texas 83-65 in the Basketball Travelers Classic at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas. The Bulls got 17 points from junior transfer Andrea Smith and 15 points from her twin sister Andrell Smith, but it was not enough. The Bulls shot 37.9 percent from the field and were just 9-of-20 from the free throw line. Texas shot 50.0 percent from the field.
Pittsburgh (6-5) rolled over Texas-Arlington 95-61, posting its highest scoring total of the year. The Panthers shot a blistering 59.0 percent from the field, including eight 3-pointers. Seven players scored 10 points or more, led by freshman Asia Logan who had 13.
On TV Tonight
UConn goes for the Division I-record 89th straight win on ESPN2 at 7 p.m. ET
Marshall is at Cincinnati on FSN-Ohio at 7 p.m. ET; DirecTV channel 660 or 661, Dish Network channel 425 or 427
Material from interviews, the Associated Press wire service as well as league and team sources was used in this report.