Sports

Notre Dame enters ACC with 4 returning starters, but looking to fill vacancy left by Diggins

  • Notre Dame players Ariel Braker (44), Natalie Achonwa (11) and Kayla McBride (21) pose for the team's official photograph during the NCAA college basketball media day on Tuesday, Oct. 8, 2013, in South Bend, Ind. (AP Photo/South Bend Tribune, James Brosher)

    Notre Dame players Ariel Braker (44), Natalie Achonwa (11) and Kayla McBride (21) pose for the team's official photograph during the NCAA college basketball media day on Tuesday, Oct. 8, 2013, in South Bend, Ind. (AP Photo/South Bend Tribune, James Brosher)  (The Associated Press)

  • Notre Dame women's basketball coach Muffet McGraw smiles as she lines up for the team photograph during the NCAA college basketball media day on Tuesday, Oct. 8, 2013, in South Bend, Ind. (AP Photo/South Bend Tribune, James Brosher)

    Notre Dame women's basketball coach Muffet McGraw smiles as she lines up for the team photograph during the NCAA college basketball media day on Tuesday, Oct. 8, 2013, in South Bend, Ind. (AP Photo/South Bend Tribune, James Brosher)  (The Associated Press)

  • Notre Dame players including Michaela Mabrey (23) and Jewell Loyd (32) walk onto the court for the NCAA college basketball media day on Tuesday, Oct. 8, 2013, in South Bend, Ind. (AP Photo/South Bend Tribune, James Brosher)

    Notre Dame players including Michaela Mabrey (23) and Jewell Loyd (32) walk onto the court for the NCAA college basketball media day on Tuesday, Oct. 8, 2013, in South Bend, Ind. (AP Photo/South Bend Tribune, James Brosher)  (The Associated Press)

Notre Dame guard Kayla McBride says the Fighting Irish head into the season with the same goals as usual: a conference title and a national championship.

McBride and the other Notre Dame seniors are out to become the first group of Fighting Irish to advance to the Final Four in four straight seasons. The Irish have four returning starters and six of their seven leading scorers back from a team that finished 35-2.

Freshman Lindsay Allen is expected to fill the point guard spot held by hometown star Skylar Diggins the past few seasons, while McBride and Natalie Achonwa are expected to take over the leadership role.

Coach Muffet McGraw says the team will have more depth at forward than in recent memory. She describes the Irish as a young veteran team.