NCAA Women's Championship: Irish topple Mississippi State with last-second shot

Mississippi State's Vic Schaefer named USBWA National Coach of the Year

Notre Dame had won it all, and Ogunbowale had become a legend whom you'll probably hear little about after this week.

Arike Ogunbowale hit the shot of a lifetime to slay unbeaten powerhouse CT in a semifinal Friday, then did it again as she hit a buzzer-beating 3 to lift the Irish to a 61-58 comeback win against Mississippi State in the title game.

Ogunbowale earned most outstanding player honors for the tournament and also received a congratulatory tweet from Kobe Bryant, who took in the semifinal win over UConn.

There was time to kill on the final possession of the semifinals, with Notre Dame taking a timeout with 14 seconds left.

The coach did at least partially attribute the shot to some divine intervention. It will go down as one of the most iconic shots in women's basketball and forever be remembered in Irish lore. This year had been about redemption and validation for Mississippi State, which has grown a women's basketball fandom in Starkville that has far exceeded expectations. On the biggest stage - the NCAA Women's Final Four - she hit the game victor for the national championship! In truth, it would seem people don't watch women's basketball because they have sexist ideas about who counts as basketball players and what version of the game is legitimate.

On Sunday, they proved their resilience once again.

Victoria Vivians scored 21 points, and Teaira McCowan capped a record-setting women's NCAA Tournament with 18 points and 17 rebounds for the Bulldogs (37-2). She also knocked down a jumper to knock out UConn in the Final Four on Friday.

With the game tied at 58, Notre Dame's, Ogunbowale, received the ball off the inbound pass, with 0.1 seconds left.

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From junior forward Jessica Shepard's layup to make the game 12-6 and her score to make it 24-16, 10 minutes and 36 seconds of basketball were played.

"Growing up, we used to treat her like a boy pretty much", said Diamond Stone.

"You've got to try to get a body on her, but she's just so darn big that you can't outjump her", McGraw said.

Tony Dejak of the Associated Press captured the moment in an incredible photo, showing Notre Dame celebrating and hugging Ogunbowale in the background, while Mississippi State's Blair Schaefer walked off the court, dejected. The 3-pointer from the wing came from almost the same angle as her shot that beat the Huskies.

"'What though the odds, ' that's part of our fight song", McGraw said. Ogunbowale's shot as time expired sealed a 61-58 victory for Notre Dame. Relentless, competitive, they have a swagger. "So this team is really special just due to their personality".

It's been 17 years since Notre Dame won it all and Monday they brought their new trophy home to the tune of trumpets. The Bulldogs lost to SC last season. But I definitely don't regret the decision, " she told Time after their Championship win on Sunday. "Especially living in my league". "When it went through, I couldn't honestly believe that it went in". McGraw was the only female head coach in this year's Final Four. I want reporters to stop ignoring the women's teams in the cities they cover whenever they're talking about the number of titles or teams the city has. "I'll wear that for maybe the rest of my career".

She got love from quite a few celebrities around the sports world, including her idol Kobe Bryant. "It makes the family look good", said Stone. "Pat her on the butt, man". Her shot swished through the basket as time expired to set off a celebration.

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