Continued from page 3

“I would definitely be out there trying to win,” Collins said. “Maybe after the game, when it’s all said and done, it would be nice to meet her.”


FRIENDS FACE OFF: The best individual matchup in Tuesday night’s game could be the Aggies’ quick, feisty guard Sydney Carter against the Irish’s smooth and dangerous Skylar Diggins.

They’ll hardly be strangers. They roomed together at USA Basketball Trials, became close friends and, you guessed it, follow each other on Twitter.

“She is awesome on and off the court,” Diggins said. “It is going to be fun playing against her. It’s fun playing against people that you know because you know they are going to challenge you.”

Diggins presents an even greater challenge for most opponents because she’s left-handed and there are few left-handers playing point guard. But one is Baylor freshman Odyssey Sims, a player the Aggies faced four times this season.

“That may help us out a little bit because guarding a left-handed guard is unorthodox in our game,” Aggies guard Sydney Colson said.


SHE’S TOUGH: Notre Dame’s Brittany Mallory thrives on sticking her nose wherever the basketball might be and she’s got the bruises and scratches to prove it.

Mallory is toughness personified for the Irish and that’s saying something on a team that has a player nicknamed Nasty (Natalie Novosel) and another called Bruiser (Becca Bruszewski).

If you see a Notre Dame player sprawled on the floor, chances are it’s Mallory.

“Coach always said I had a hard nose for the ball,” Mallory said. “I just go in and I get hit probably five times every game. Sometimes I fall to the ground, sometimes I don’t. I’ve just got to keep fighting. I’m not going to sit out in a lot of things.”

Mallory developed that toughness as a youngster. She and her brother, Bobby, who’s 3 years older, used to go 1-on-1 at a hoop on the cul-de-sac where the family lives in Baltimore.

“This one specific time, I remember I was about to win,” she said. “I beat him on the dribble and he just pushed me and my face hit the metal bar. So I ran inside and said, ‘Daddy, he pushed me!’ And he goes, ‘Well, you can either cry about it or play through it.’ That was my dad’s saying.

“I was like, fine. I wiped my face and I threw the ball back to my brother and said, ‘Let’s finish this game.’”

Story Continues →