Despite loss, McBride makes strong showing at Final Four

   April 9, 2014 7:57 am    0

 

Notre Dame's Kayla McBride, left, guards Connecticut's Moriah Jefferson during the NCAA title game Tuesday night. AP Photo

Notre Dame’s Kayla McBride, left, guards Connecticut’s Moriah Jefferson during the NCAA title game Tuesday. AP Photo

It was not the ending that Kayla McBride wanted, but the Villa Maria graduate still made quite an impression at the Women’s Final Four this week.

Powerful UConn (40-0) beat Notre Dame 79-58 Tuesday in Nashville, Tenn., to hand the Fighting Irish (37-1) their only loss of the season as McBride concluded her college career.

McBride made a strong showing in the semifinals and the championship game. After scoring a game-high 28 points in a semifinal victory over Maryland on Sunday, McBride tied for game-high honors Tuesday with 21 points. She helped keep the Irish in the game during the first half by scoring 13 points as UConn took a 45-38 lead into intermission.

McBride’s 49-point total in the Final Four marked the ninth-highest total by a player in tournament history as she earned a spot on the all-tournament team. She also finished with the seventh-highest career free-throw percentage in NCAA tournament history at 88 percent (44-of-50).

The 5-foot 11-inch senior guard also moved into fifth place on ND’s career scoring list with 1,876 points. She passed Jacqueline Batteast (1,874) Tuesday.

McBride will now look forward to the WNBA draft Monday. She is widely considered a top-five prospect for the league.

– Jeff Kirik, sports editor

 

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