The Red Storm (13-8) rallied back from a 20-point deficit and used a 13-4 run in the second half to come within 11 with 13:34 left. St. John’s kept the rest of the second half close and forced the Irish into 10 turnovers, while committing just five. For the game, the Red Storm outscored the Irish 20-17 off turnovers. In the first half, Notre Dame outscored St. John’s 15-9 off miscues.
St. John’s became the first unranked team, and the first team not in the Top 10, to keep the margin of victory to 15 points or less against a Notre Dame (21-1) squad who entered the game outscoring opponents by an average of 34.8 points.
"I feel like we just played the best team in the country,” remarked head coach Kim Barnes Arico. “We were extremely tight in the first half, and I'm not sure why, we're not normally like that. I'm sure some of it was due to Notre Dame's pressure and their reputation."
St. John's jumped out to a 6-1 lead before Notre Dame (21-1, 8-0 BIG EAST) went on a 19-2 run to take an early 12-point lead. St. John's trailed by 20 at the half before cutting its deficit to 47-36, but the Red Storm could get no closer.
Notre Dame has won 21 of the 24 games between the teams, but the Red Storm had won the previous three at home, including upsetting the then-No. 4 Irish in 2010.
Senior forward Da'Shena Stevens and junior guard Shenneika Smith each scored 10 points to lead St. John's. With Smith’s 10 points she moves up to No. 14 on the all-time scoring list with 1,079 points, surpassing LaTasha Thompson (1997-2001).