With the 2018-19 season quickly approaching, here at Slap the Sign we will be previewing the different classes of the defending National Champions (how great does that sound?) Notre Dame Women’s Basketball team. Now for a look at the sophomores.
The Notre Dame Women’s Basketball sophomore class is the returning class that we know the least about. Mikayla Vaughn missed a majority of her freshman season due to an ACL tear, while Danielle Patterson saw around 12 minutes per game off the bench. This year could be a breakout year for both players with Kathryn Westbeld and Kristina Nelson both graduating.
Mikayla Vaughn – Center/6’3” – Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Mikayla Vaughn was going to be the answer for the Irish with Brianna Turner out with an ACL tear. Vaughn was expected to play heavy minutes in the lineup and hopefully put up some points. Instead, just six games into the season, she was lost to injury. She averaged 13 minutes coming off the bench.
This season, it will be interesting to see how ready she is to start the season. Even if she is good to go, the mental side of things could play a factor. Regardless, the Irish will rely on her coming off the bench to put up some points and be a force in the center of the defense.
Danielle Patterson – Forward/6’2” – Brooklyn, New York
In 2017-18, Danielle Patterson came off the bench and was very important for the Irish late in games. If the Irish had a comfortable lead in a game or a forward was in foul trouble, Patterson often came into the game to fill the void. She played in 33 games last season and scored in 20 of them.
It will be interesting to see what Patterson’s role will be in 2018-19. With Brianna Turner and Vaughn being healthy this season, it might be difficult for Patterson to pick up more minutes than she did last season. She will most likely be used in defensive roles for the Irish in this upcoming season.