Baylor coach Kim Mulkey gives heartfelt championship interview after Lauren Cox's injury

Notre Dame and Baylor to meet in Sunday's championship game

The thrill of victory. Incredibly, the automatic Ogunbowale did, missed both really - the first one bounced around and then off the rim, and she meant to miss the second one, but it went in, depriving Notre Dame of a chance to try and tip in a game-tying rebound.

Ogunbowale, who had converted 33 of her 36 free throws in this year's NCAA Tournament, missed the first and inadvertently converted the second, preventing any chance of a put-back basket.

"Just a great game for women's basketball", Baylor coach Kim Mulkey said. The Irish were able to rally from a 14-point deficit in the third quarter to tie it at 78 in the fourth.

The Lady Bears, seeking their third national title, led 62-50 with 1:22 remaining Sunday night when Cox was injured.

Baylor hung on despite losing 6-foot-4 junior Lauren Cox to a left leg injury in the closing minutes of the third quarter.

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The Baylor Bears are back at the top of the sport with their Sunday win in the women's college basketball national title game. And the way they won in 2018 was breathtaking, with buzzer-beaters by Ogunbowale in the semifinal and championship games against CT and Mississippi State, respectively. Outside of one start this season, she is typically Mulkey's first player off the bench, averaging 15.7 minutes of playing time per-game. Ogunbowale, the hero from previous year, missed a key free throw with 1.9 seconds left. "It's tough", Ogunbowale told reporters. They could not hit free throws or rebound the ball which eventually led to UConn pulling away. Baylor is going to slow the tempo, control the glass and turn this into a pace that makes Notre Dame uncomfortable. And only Auriemma, Summit and Sharp have won consecutive national titles, which is what McGraw is trying to accomplish. It dominated the action for three quarters, and then when its best player on both ends of the court was sidelined the final 11:22 and the Bears fell behind and incurred foul problems, they found fantastic mental fortitude to finish with the victory. The Fighting Irish had more ACL tears (four) than losses, and those injuries last season left Notre Dame with just seven scholarship players. Epitomizing their resolve was Baylor freshman NaLyssa Smith, who as Cox's replacement tallied 14 points, six rebounds and a blocked shot. Both teams entered the tournament as No. 1 seeds.

The Irish topped the Huskies 91-89 in OT during last year's Final Four, while UConn beat Notre Dame 89-71 in a meeting last December between the powerhouses.

Brown grabbed multiple offensive rebounds for put backs and then fought through double teams to draw fouls against the Irish front line. No one ever seems open, and virtually every point has to be earned.

Even fans who've watched the team for decades came out, like 81 year-old Laura Hagan, who also watched the Fighting Irish play when the NCAA Women's Final Four was in Tampa in 2015.

For a second-straight year, Notre Dame found themselves in a position to finish out a championship run in dramatic fashion in the final seconds of the title game. Her fatigue set in when asked about what her process might look like between now and the 2019 WNBA Draft in New York City.

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