Stanford vs Notre Dame

Stanford vs Notre Dame Live : Stanford vs Notre Dame have played each other four times in the past five years in the regional round of the tournament.Notre Dame’s defense bared its teeth early and often on Saturday night in South Bend.The Notre Dame–Stanford football rivalry is an American college football rivalry between the Notre Dame Fighting Irish football team of the University of Notre Dame and Stanford Cardinal football team of Stanford University.

Stanford (31-4) will renew its rivalry with Notre Dame (33-3) on Monday night with a berth in the Final Four at stake. It marks the fourth time in five years they are meeting in either the Elite Eight or Sweet 16.The NCAA regional final is just the latest chapter between the two storied programs, as well as their Hall of Fame head coaches, Stanford’s Tara VanDeveer and Notre Dame’s Muffett McGraw.

“I do feel like we do know their team very well,” VanDeveer said. “They have a tremendous team, their coaching staff is outstanding. They’re just really elite at everything that they do. They’re really obviously very experienced players. They’re very physical. Everything — they’re fun to watch when you’re not trying to prepare for them.”

Notre Dame is the defending national champion. The Irish returned four starters from the team that got past Mississippi State 61-58 on Arike Ogunbowale’s buzzer-beating 3-pointer.Added to that lineup is All-American center Brianna Turner, who missed all of last season recovering from a knee injury.

Stanford, which has won 12 straight since an 88-48 loss to Oregon, is making its 20th appearance in the Elite Eight and has advanced to the Final Four in seven of the past 11 seasons.

“We’ve played each other a lot, so they really know our plays and what we like to do, and vice versa,” said Ogunbowale, who had a career-high 34 points in an 87-80 victory over Texas A&M on Saturday. “So, it’s going definitely to be a game of discipline and runs. We’re both good teams, so who can execute the game plan better?”

In 2017, Stanford overcame a 16-point second-half deficit to edge the Irish 76-75 on a layup by Alanna Smith with 23 seconds left. Erica McCall preserved the victory by blocking a shot by Ogunbowale in the closing seconds.

The previous year, the Cardinal toppled top-seeded Notre Dame 90-84 in the regional semifinal, snapping the Irish’s winning streak at 26 games.In 2015, the top-seeded Irish ended Stanford’s season with an 81-60 victory in the Sweet 16.

The 40-point home loss to Oregon on Feb. 10 was a turning point for the Cardinal, who proceeded to earn a 64-57 victory over the Ducks in the Pac-12 tournament final.

“Obviously, having a loss like that, you don’t want to lose like that again, and I think … it’s a learning opportunity,” Smith said. “But then again, it’s also in the past. I think if you look at that game and then look at us playing now, we have improved. We’re a different team. It’s important to look back at games like that to learn, but it’s also important to move forward from them.”

In Saturday’s 55-46 semifinal victory over Missouri State, the Cardinal relied on defense to offset a dismal offensive performance, improving to 28-0 when holding their opponent to fewer than 70 points.Stanford shot a season-low 25 percent (17-for-68), including 3-for-29 from 3-point range, but also held the Lady Bears to 25 percent shooting.

Notre Dame is the highest-scoring team in the country at 89.1 points per game.“You always want to control the tempo,” McGraw said. “We do like to run. We’re a transition-type team. I think our offense feeds our defense, which is kind of the opposite of they way it’s supposed to go. But, when we can get out and run, we enjoy playing the game a lot more. We can play half-court, and we certainly have some pretty good weapons on offense, but they are a very good defensive team.”

Jessica Shepard, a 6-foot-4 senior forward who transferred to Notre Dame after two years at Nebraska, combines with Turner, the Irish’s career rebound leader, for a formidable presence down low. Shepard had 24 points and 14 rebounds against Texas A&M, her eighth consecutive double-double.

“They go inside with a real vengeance,” VanDeveer said. “Their bigs are just really big and physical, and that’s a bigger part of their game than maybe in years past.The starting five of Ogunbowale, Turner, Shepard, Marina Mabry and Jackie Young is the most prolific scoring group in NCAA Division I history with 9,992 points.

“We’re going to all have to come to the party tomorrow,” Stanford junior guard DiJonai Carrington said. “There’s not going to be any half-effort that’s going to get the job done.”Being familiar with Notre Dame’s strong lineup is one thing. Stopping it is another matter.

Iowa vs Baylor

Iowa vs Baylor Live : The Baylor vs Iowa DI Women’s Basketball game, clash in the Greensboro Region final will feature a matchup of two of the nation’s best centers. the Iowa State Cyclones and Baylor Bears have to feel optimistic about their 2019 NCAA Tournament chances, No. 19 Iowa State stayed with No. 1 Baylor for over three quarters Monday night, but ultimately lost 67-49 in the championship game,

Baylor (34-1) is certainly wary of Iowa, which has won 13 of its last 14 games, including the Big Ten tournament.The Lady Bears have seen their share of who’s-who opponents lately, including Big 12 Player of the Year Bridget Carleton of Iowa State in the conference tournament, California star center Kristine Anigwe, and South Carolina’s crafty coach, Dawn Staley.

So here comes another one.“Everything they do offensively goes through Gustafson, and she is a tremendous player,” Baylor coach Kim Mulkey said. “And if you try to go down there and double her or help, she has perimeter players that shoot the 3-ball that you can’t leave them open. While she’s the best player in the country according to ESPN, she isn’t doing it by herself. She has plenty of help around her.”

Mulkey’s description sounds a lot like how Baylor’s opponents have talked about the Lady Bears this season.It’s possibly, maybe even likely, that the Hawkeyes and Lady Bears frontcourts could cancel each other out and the fans in Greensboro Coliseum as well as those watching on ESPN2 will be treated to a guard-driven battle.

“I think they’re going to shoot a lot more 3s than South Carolina did,” Cox said. “I think they’re going to shoot a lot more 3s and establish their post presence early.”On the flip side, Iowa will be on the alert for some of the same things.

“They definitely have a great group of guards that we’re going to have to try to disrupt,” Iowa point guard Kathleen Doyle said. “All we can do is try to make their life as hard as possible.”The Lady Bears will be attempting to make it out of the state of North Carolina for the first time in four tries when they face Iowa on Monday night.

Both Baylor’s Kalani Brown and Iowa’s Megan Gustafson are among five finalists for the Lisa Leslie Award, given to the top center in the country.It’s almost a certainty that the ESPN2 broadcast of the Baylor-Iowa Elite Eight matchup will start by hyping up the clash of the centers.And fair enough, since Iowa center Megan Gustafson and Baylor center Kalani Brown are both finalists for the Lisa Leslie Award, given to the top center in women’s college basketball.

That’s the big, bold headline for Baylor vs. Iowa, which will tip off at 6 p.m. CT on Monday at Greensboro Coliseum. And it’s a ready-made TV promo for the hours leading up to the game.

Brown is a two-time All-American and was the unanimous Big 12 Player of the Year in 2018. At 6-foot-7, she’s a dominant force, as proven by her 2,100 career points and 1,100 career rebounds. Gustafson is the espnW national player of the year this season. The 6-3 Hawkeyes center leads the nation in scoring at 27.9 points per game and field-goal percentage at 70.2. Like Brown, she’s well past 2,000 career points and 1,000 career boards.

Those are superstar qualifications. And what’s more amazing is that each center has a top-notch forward as a frontcourt teammate. On Sunday, the media covering the Greensboro Region went beyond the Brown vs. Gustafson battle and focused on Baylor’s Brown and Lauren Cox against Iowa’s Gustafson and forward Hannah Stewart.

“Not very many times do teams have two bigs anymore,” Iowa coach Lisa Bluder said. “It’s kind of unusual. It’s hard sometimes to have one good big on a team. … I think it’s going to be a great matchup. We have to keep them off the boards. They do a great job of rebounding.”

Baylor made its first NCAA Tournament appearance in 2001 in Durham, when the Lady Bears were defeated in the first round by No. 9 seed Arkansas. Baylor returned to North Carolina in 2007 as a No. 5 seed and lost in the second round against fourth-seeded N.C. State in Raleigh. And in 2009, No. 3 seed Louisville upset No. 2 seed Baylor in the Sweet 16 back in Raleigh.
Lisa Bluder channeled her inner Herb Brooks on Sunday, taking a line from his “Miracle on Ice” pregame speech.

“If we play (Baylor) 10 times, maybe they win nine,” said Bluder, women’s basketball coach at the University of Iowa. “But maybe that one time is (Monday).”