What a great game. First and foremost, congrats to Colin Falls for becoming the best 3-point shooter in Big East history (he tied some NBDL baller you might have heard of).
So it started pretty awfully. Down by double digits early, the Warriors (err... Golden Eagles) took advantage of poor shooting and defense by the Irish. Notre Dame came back with a vengeance to lead by six at the half, survived an early second half scare, and pulled away at the end. 85-73 in a great rivalry game. Plenty of Marquette fans there, a little trash talking, and plenty of technicals to go around.
Luke Harangody take a bow. Best game yet for the rising star. 22 points, 12 rebounds. He was the heart and soul of the attack down the stretch. Time after time Bamm-Bamm backed down Ousmane Barro for easy buckets. Five fouls, including one that set off Dominique (that's how you pronounce it, right?) James for a technical. It's great to see the guy get this pumped as a freshman, but let's not let it get out of control. All in all, great job.
Tory Jackson also had his best performance. 21 points, seven rebounds. He made his only attempt from three point, which helped a lot. When pressured, he took care of the ball and made his free throws. The last second tip in better be on ESPN tomorrow.
Colin Falls is now the Big East three-point king. Well deserved. 13 points, 8 boards. Pretty erratic at times with the ball-handling, but overall very solid.
Russ had some trouble shooting, and the Irish sure looked good with him off the floor. That's a good sign for next year, and Carter will be a big plus when he starts knocking those shots down the rest of the season.
Rob Kurz didn't play a lot, had some trouble, but Harangody made up for it. With Luke owning the post, Robby got a deserved night off.
Hillesland was very solid in Kurz's place. 5 points, 5 rebounds. Zeller made a clutch three and grabbed a rebound. Ayers didn't make his shots, but played solid defense. Peoples and senior walk-on Kieran Piller played all of 0.2 seconds.
Very fun game to watch, pretty heated on both sides. The Irish solidify an NCAA bid and all-but lock up a Big East bye. Great job, guys. Need to take care of business next Saturday and take the postseason by storm. Onward to victory!