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Women’s basketball season comes to a close at hands of Notre Dame

Brittany Lucia
Kent State in a team huddle after a tough start to their game against the University of Notre Dame on March 23, 2024.

The Kent State women’s basketball team fell to the University of Notre Dame in the first round of the NCAA tournament Saturday, losing 81-68. 

Redshirt senior guard Katie Shumate led the Flashes in scoring with 20 points, shooting 7-for-17 from the field and 2-for-6 from the free-throw line.

Freshman forward Janae Tyler finished with 18 points, shooting 8-for-11 from the field.

The Flashes won the tip-off, with Shumate scoring a quick layup for the game’s first points. 

After a made free throw by sophomore guard Dionna Gray, the Flashes were held scoreless for more than 6 minutes. 

Junior forward Jenna Batsch ended the run for the Fighting Irish, hitting a 3-pointer with 1:12 left in the quarter. Junior Sonia Citron led the Fighting Irish with nine points in the first quarter, and the Fighting Irish led the game 22-10 at the end of quarter one. 

Notre Dame’s graduate senior Anna DeWolfe jumpstarted the second quarter with a quick three, making it 25-10 Irish. The Flashes were unable to respond and earned a shot clock violation. 

At the end of the second quarter, the Fighting Irish led 49-30. The Flashes scored 16 points from the paint and 11 points from the bench. Citron led ND in the first half, scoring 16 points with three rebounds and four assists. 

The Flashes held AP All-American Hannah Hidalgo to just eight points in the first half.

KSU started the second half with a three-pointer from Gray and a jump shot from Shumate to make the score 49-32 Fighting Irish.

With the clock at 7:08, Batsch scored her second three-pointer to bring the score to 56-38 before KSU called its first time out of the half.

Coming out of the time-out, Tyler hit a layup to bring the score to 58-40 Fighting Irish. 

KSU earned its sixth foul for the half after Batsch earned her fourth personal foul. With 2:17 left in the quarter, the Flashes had out-fouled the Fighting Irish 7-1. 

Notre Dame was held scoreless for the last four minutes and 40 seconds of the third quarter.

Before ending the quarter, Westbeld earned her fourth personal foul on Gray. Gray hit both free throws to go into the fourth with a score of 59-46 Fighting Irish. 

With 7:06 left in the game, Tyler went 1-for-2 from the free throw line to earn her 16th point, bringing the score to 65-49.

Shumate hit a three-pointer to make the score 67-52 with 6:11 left in the game, followed by a three-pointer from Gray, making it 67-55. The Fighting Irish responded with a three-pointer from Citron, making the score 70-55. 

With 2:45 left, Shumate hit her second three-point shot to make the score 77-63. 

The Flashes were 38% from the field and 7-for-22 from the three-point line. They scored 20 points off the bench and had nine points from turnovers. 

Notre Dame shot 52% from the field and 7-for-17 from behind the arc. The team totaled 32 rebounds and 24 assists.

The Fighting Irish will take on the winner of the University of Mississippi (Ole Miss) and Marquette game Monday in the tournament’s second round. 

Kelsie Horner is assistant managing editor. Contact her at [email protected].

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About the Contributor
Kelsie Horner, Assistant Managing Editor
Kelsie is a senior journalism major with a minor in communications. In her three semesters at KentWired, she has served as a Digital Tech, Digital Editor and Assistant Managing Editor.
Contact her at [email protected].

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