SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- Natalie Achonwa had 23 points with 12 rebounds as No. 5 Notre Dame cruised to a 109-70 win over Utah State on Saturday.
Markisha Wright had 14 points with 11 rebounds and Skylar Diggins added 12 points and 10 assists, marking the first time in seven years that three Irish players had double-doubles.Notre Dame (6-1) dominated Utah State (2-7) in the paint, with Achonwa and other players hitting easy shots in the low post off feeds from fastbreak and half-court sets.Utah State tried collapsing on the low post, but was often whistled for fouls. Aggies guard Jenna Johnson fouled out just three minutes into the second half.Devyn Christiansen led the Aggies with 21 points.Notre Dame took a 17-point lead into the break, then quickly put the game away by forcing turnovers with a full-court press. Ariel Braker and Jewell Lloyd each scored 15 for the Irish.Playing mostly reserves, Notre Dame outscored Utah State 28-8 over the first 10 minutes of the second half. The Aggies hit 7 of 14 3-point attempts in the first half, but only 1 of 12 in the second.Notre Dame outrebounded Utah State 56-27 and outscored the Aggies 64-24 in the paint. Irish guard Kayla McBride, who had eight points, left the game with an injured right ankle with 3:43 left in the first half and did not return.Coach Muffet McGraw said she hoped McBride will be ready for the trip to Las Vegas on Dec. 19.Notre Dame recovered after losing to No. 3 Baylor 73-61 on Wednesday night.