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Miami Hurricanes women’s basketball is legit

Finally, a team to feel good about!

Tony Capobianco

The University of Miami football team is coming off a 7-6 season. The shorthanded men’s basketball team may not finish this season above .500.

But the women’s basketball team is on fire.

No. 25 Miami’s (20-5, 8-2 ACC) 72-65 win over No. 4 Notre Dame on Thursday was their first ever win over a reigning national champion. The Fighting Irish joined the ACC in 2013 and while they have been a powerhouse, Miami seems to be the only team that has their number.

The Hurricanes are the only team to have multiple victories over the Fighting Irish in ACC play.

“I felt really good about it going in. I told them in the locker room before the game and at halftime, do not be surprised when you win this basketball game,” Miami head coach Katie Meier said. “We are capable, we are a great matchup. Control what you can control, which is take care of the ball and don’t take vulnerable shots—take shots that we can defend or we can rebound. That’s it. You’ve got to do that and then you’re taking 20 points off of Notre Dame’s board. That’s exactly what they did.”

Senior forward/center Emese Hof scored a game-high 21 points and led the team with 13 rebounds against Notre Dame. Redshirt junior forward Beatrice Mompremier followed it up with 18 points and 12 rebound, making them the first duo to log a double-double versus the Fighting Irish since March 16, 2018.

Miami limited Notre Dame to just 22-of-59 shooting and it was the first game this season in which the Fighting Irish did not lead at the end of any quarter.

“Well, we have great size on our team. On the ball screen schemes, we tried to take away a lot of their vision,” Meier said of Miami’s defensive success. “Emese and Beatrice did a really nice job of giving support to our guards off of ball screens and that was a really big deal.”

Now the Hurricanes will be tested with three straight games on the road, starting with Pittsburgh on Sunday at 2 p.m. at the Petersen Events Center in Pittsburgh. The Panthers are searching for their first ACC win this season, entering the game at 9-15.

Miami owns a 21-9 all-time mark versus Pittsburgh after winning nine of the past 10 meetings and each of the past four. After that game, Miami travels to Louisville after a short break. The Cardinals are currently ranked No. 2. The third game is at Virginia Tech before returning home to take on rival Florida State.