SOUTH BEND – Kayla McBride scored 31 points and No. 2 Notre Dame jumped to an 18-point lead early and held on to beat seventh-ranked Duke 81-70 Sunday to claim the Atlantic Coast Conference title in its inaugural season in the league.
The Blue Devils scored six points in the final 7 seconds of the first half and eventually cut the lead to seven points three times in the second half, the final time when Kendall McCravey-Cooper hit a jumper to make it 66-59. But McBride answered with back-to-back baskets to spark an 8-0 run.
The Irish (27-0, 14-0 ACC) won their third straight regular-season league title, with the first two coming in the Big East. The Blue Devils (24-4, 11-3) saw their streak of four straight ACC regular-season titles end.
Elizabeth Williams led Duke with 20 and Alexis Jones had 15 before leaving with an injured knee midway through the second half.