#4 Rutgers Defeats #14 Notre Dame

21 and 4 ... and 2. With the victory, Coach Stringer's Scarlet Knights move to 21 up and 4 down. With the win, Coach Stringer is just a pair of victories away from joining a very exclusive club - 800 career victories.

Epiphanny Prince scored 18 an Rutgers needed just about every single one of them as the Scarlet Knights defeated Notre Dame (20-6, 8-4) 57-51 at the Rutgers Athletic Center Tuesday night. With the victory, Rutgers (21-4, 11-1) moves into a dead heat with first place Connecticut. The only meeting this year was won by the Scarlet Knights, giving RU the advantage in the standings based on head to head meetings. Rutgers will meet UConn in Storrs on March 3rd in the regular season finale, a game that may very well determine the conference crown.

This game, however, will be remembered for getting the Hall of Fame Coach from Rutgers inches closer to another career milestone, one that has been reached by only Pat Summitt and Jody Conradt - 800 victories.

"Honestly I haven't even started thinking about it yet," said Stringer. "I didn't really know until I saw a fan in the stands with a card saying 800."

Nearly three minutes into the game, Rutgers fell behind early. Kia Vaughn's two point layup at the 16:47 mark put Rutgers into the scoring column. From that point on the teams were nearly neck and neck until a 9-0 Rutgers run erased a 1 point deficit and turned it into an 8 point lead, 22-14. Epiphanny Prince and Matee Ajavon contributed all the scoring during the mini-run.

Notre Dame answered, however, and for the following 6:20 held Rutgers scoreless. The Irish, behin stifling defense tied the game (22-22) on a Charel Allen jumper as the half wound down.

The Irish continued in the second half precisely where they left off in the first, notching the 6 of the first 8 points scored and taking a 28-24 lead before a Kia Vaughn putback put the RU offense back in gear. After consecutive Ajavon jumpers, Rugers regained the lead once more and would lead by as many as 8 (41-33) on their way to the 57-51 win.

The Scarlet Knights have won consecutive games since the controversial loss at No. 3 Tennessee last week. RU will next be in action on Saturday (2/23) at Providence, with tipoff scheduled for 2 p.m.

Big East Conference Standings
TEAM CONF W-L TOTAL W-L
#1 Connecticut 11-1 24-1
#4 Rutgers 11-1 21-4
#13 West Virginia 10-2 21-4
#14 Notre Dame 8-4 20-6
#21 Pittsburgh 8-4 18-7
#24 Syracuse 7-5 19-6
Louisville 7-5 18-7
DePaul 6-5 17-7
Marquette 6-6 14-11
Villanova 5-8 15-11
St. John's 4-8 13-12
Georgetown 3-8 13-11
Seton Hall 3-9 13-11
South Florida 3-9 13-12
Providence 2-10 12-13
Cincinnati 2-11 11-14

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