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Diggins, Peters lead Irish 76-43 past Villanova

Skylar Diggins scored 20 points and Devereaux Peters added 19 as No. 2 Notre Dame routed Villanova 76-43 Saturday for its 16th straight victory.

Notre Dame (19-1) remained unbeaten at 7-0 in the Big East, and won its fourth straight game by more than 20 points. The Irish's national championship team won its first 23 games in 2000-01.

Rachel Roberts scored 14 to lead Villanova (12-7, 2-4). The Wildcats had 20 turnovers.

Villanova coach Harry Perretta was not with the team because of a death in the family. A team spokesman said Perretta attended a funeral Saturday and would return to practice Sunday. Assistant coach Joe Mullaney ran the team in his absence.

In the first half, Peters scored 17 points, Notre Dame had only two turnovers and Villanova went 7 of 23 from the field as the Irish built a 44-16 lead at the break. The Irish shot 52 percent in the half.

The rout was on early, with the Irish making 12 of 17 shots for a 32-11 lead. During the same 12-minute span, the overmatched Wildcats connected on just 5 of 13 shots and turned the ball over seven times, thanks to the Notre Dame press.

Peters opened 5 of 6 from the field and Diggins was 4 of 6 with three early assists.

The Irish will host No. 9 Tennessee in a non-conference game on Monday night.