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South Bend: Home of the Fighting Irish, Skylar Diggins, and Jasmine Watson

Nov 18, 2012, 11:36 PM EDT


Does the name Jasmine Watson sound familiar to anyone?

If it doesn’t, she is a South Bend native who used play high school basketball with Skylar Diggins when they were teammates at nearby Washington High School in South Bend.

Watson now is the starting senior center for the University of Massachusetts. She and Skylar haven’t really had the opportunity to see each other or play on the same court since their high school days, but there had always been talk of a Notre Dame-Massachusetts game played at Purcell Pavilion in an attempt to bring Jasmine back to her hometown.

That game finally took place this afternoon and it proved to be a great experience for both the Irish basketball players and the Minutewomen.

source: AP

Jasmine Watson defends Irish guard Jewell Loyd. (Photo by Joe Raymond)

“It was great to be able to play in front of my parents and family,” Waston said following the game. “It was a real perk for me to play back home.”

Watson’s coach, Sharon Dawley also indicated that with several players having ties to the Midwest, this also was a convenient opportunity for many families to come see their daughters play.

Diggins enjoyed the chance to play against her friend and former teammate. “We hadn’t seen each other in a while, so it was nice to get to see her and talk to her before and after the game.”

When asked if it was weird to play against an old high school friend and teammate, Diggins felt that it was no different than playing any other team because she had never actually played against Watson on any other occasions.

“This was no different than any other game. We got to see each other before and after and obviously played against each other in the game. This was no different that any other (game),” Diggins said.

Diggins enjoyed their reunion, but she still maintained her calm and focus during the game to lead the team to a well-played victory.

South Bend has been home to some great players, so today’s chance to see two of the best that the area has produced was a pretty unique experience for the players, their families and friends as well as all the fans who attended the game.

A great afternoon of basketball for all in the “Bend.”  Great game, Skylar and Jasmine!

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Welcome to In The Paint, the official blog providing in-depth and exclusive access to the Notre Dame basketball programs. With features, videos, photos, commentaries and news from inside the Purcell Pavilion, we are committed to bringing you coverage of the Fighting Irish unlike any you can find elsewhere.

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