Wow. All I can say is ... wow.
There are really no words to express how excited and proud I am of our program and accomplishing a regional final win to advance to the Final Four.
It is times like these when you have to sit back and thank everyone who has helped you get to this point. For me, I'd like to thank my teammates and coaches, my family, the Notre Dame community and fans, and all of the administration for their hard work and support of our team this season.
Going back to the Final Four means a lot to our program and to the state of Indiana. For our program, this is an opportunity for a national title, and a chance to do something no Notre Dame women's basketball team has done since 2001. This is also a chance for Hoosier fans all over to come out and support an Indiana team in the Final Four. We are not only representing the state, but also the Midwest. I know that fans all over the region will come out to support this event.
I know how much excitement the Final Four can be for a fan. I was around when Notre Dame won the national championship in 2001. I can remember watching the game and cheering on my favorite player, Niele Ivey. Now, Niele Ivey is the assistant coach for our team! I feel so lucky to have one of my mentors, and someone I looked up to when I was younger, around and teaching me how to run the team like she did. I try my best to be a sponge and learn from her every day.
This will not be my first time playing at Conseco Fieldhouse. When I was in high school, my team had the opportunity to play for a state championship three consecutive years there. Although having the opportunity to compete in a state championship game was amazing, competing for a national championship is something I have dreamed of!
Playing on this big stage for my university, in front of a huge crowd, is every NCAA student-athlete's ultimate goal. I'm proud of my team for being able to make it to this point of the season.
It really is a blessing, and I can't wait for the ride to begin today as we drive down Highway 31 to Indy.