Former Notre Dame women's basketball forward Sam Brunelle lands at University of Virginia

Tribune Staff Report
Feb 3, 2022; South Bend, Indiana, USA; Notre Dame Fighting Irish forward Sam Brunelle (33) drives to the basket as Virginia Tech Hokies forward D'asia Gregg (11) defends in the second half at the Purcell Pavilion. Mandatory Credit: Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

Former Notre Dame forward Sam Brunelle will return to her home state to play basketball at the University of Virginia.

The Ruckersville, Va. native, who entered the transfer portal last week, along with teammates Anaya Peoples and Abby Prohaska, announced via twitter Saturday night that she will join the Cavaliers.

► One game at a time:One game at a time: A journey through Notre Dame's 2021-22 women’s basketball season

Brunelle, currently a junior, has two seasons of eligibility left.

The 6-foot-2 Brunelle came off the bench to average 16.5 minutes a game this past season when the Irish (24-9, 12-5 ACC) advanced to the Sweet Sixteen of the NCAA Tournament.

Brunelle scored nearly seven points a game (6.8 ppg), averaged 2.5 rebounds a contest and totaled 20 blocks.

Brunelle was the No. 6-ranked recruit in the Class of 2019 and at one time was ranked No. 1. She was a McDonald's All-American that season.

As a freshman, Brunelle led all ACC freshmen in scoring at 13.9 points per game and was named to the ACC all-freshman team. She was the first player in program history to start her career with seven double-digit scoring performances (the previous record was four). Scored a career high 31 points against DePaul that season and grabbed a career high 13 rebounds vs. Toledo.

Her sophomore season was cut short by a knee injury. She played in 17 games off the bench, averaging 22.8 minutes, averaging 8.7 points, 3.7 rebounds and 1.5 assists per game. She had a career high five assists against Louisville.

Virginia finished 5-22 this past season and 2-14 in the Atlantic Coast Conference.