NCAA HOOPS | One Notre Dame Freshman Having A Homecoming in Lexington

03/24/2017 12:15 PM

The Sweet 16 for the Women’s NCAA Basketball Tournament will be held Friday night. One match up- Notre Dame versus Ohio State has some Kentucky connections, one being former Miss Kentucky Basketball and Elizabethtown graduate, Erin Boley. Boley, a freshman forward for the Irish was happy to see that the tournament would take her back home.

“I was excited. I was hoping we’d come to Lexington. It’s just nice to be home in Kentucky,” Boley explained in the locker room prior to her first practice in the arena.

For Boley, playing in the NCAA tournament was a dream of hers for a long time, but at Notre Dame its expected.

“You know, I knew coming in to a great program like this that there’s going to be opportunities like that and it’s just exciting to be a part of it,” Boley said. “You know, I’m trying to stay focused and do what I can to help us advance to the next round.”

After her stellar high school career in the Bluegrass State, like many college students, she had to take time to adjust to her new environment and the level of play.

“Just being a freshman student-athlete is a tough adjustment for anyone, but I think as the year has gone on I’ve grown a lot. As a person and a player and looking back now I think that I’ve grown a lot when it comes to just learning what role I need to play for this team and getting more comfortable,” Boley told Spectrum News.

The E-Town grad is averaging 6.2 points per game this season. After Brianna Turner went down with an injury in their game against Purdue, one that will keep her out the rest of the season, Boley said the team learned what they’re made of.

“You can’t get caught up in the highs and lows, you just kind of have to stay steady somewhere in the middle, because you know, with everything that happens- not just in basketball, but in life, you know, you have to stay- keep a level head, I guess, at all times.”

Boley said she expects a good-sized cheering section not just for the Irish, being just a few hours from South Bend, but also of her family and friends back home. As a kid from Kentucky, she’s excited to take the court in Rupp Arena.

“It’s a great atmosphere, I think. I’ve been to women’s and men’s games here and I think, just, I think Kentucky is a great basketball state in general and I think it’s going to be cool playing at Rupp because it always has a great atmosphere.”

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