Notre Dame didn't begin the season like a team that would reach the Final Four.
The Fighting Irish had a 5-3 record at one point. Since then, they've lost just four times — three of them to Connecticut, Notre Dame's opponent in Sunday's semifinal.
The team bounced back when players adjusted to new roles, helping the offense rank 11th nationally with 77.4 points per game and fourth in field-goal percentage.
Natalie Novosel has almost tripled her scoring production since last season and leads the team with 14.9 points per game. Skylar Diggins has made a seamless transition from shooting guard to point guard, earning third-team All-America honors.
Coach Muffet McGraw said the team has also put a greater emphasis on defense.