Monday, 19 March, 2018

Notre Dame Rallies Over Virginia Tech

Virginia head coach Tony Bennett watches as his team plays Pittsburgh during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game Saturday Feb. 24 2018 in Pittsburgh Another Historic Battle! Duke vs. UNC Watch The ACC Tourney Game On WFMY News 2
Deanna Wagner | 08 March, 2018, 23:26

If the comeback win over Virginia Tech isn't enough, they could nearly certainly punch their tickets on Thursday night with a win over Duke. But they get Duke tomorrow in the the ACC quarterfinals, and if they win that game - Clemson is a top 15 team in the RPI - then I think they'll probably get a bid. The loss knocked Tech down to 21-11, 10-9 on the season. Like Coach said, we just fell apart. At this point, I still think that the Irish are on the outside looking in. We were OK offensively. Didn't guard the ball. The 6-foot-6 forward will give up several inches to everyone in the Blue Devil frontcourt, but Colson still arguably the best rebounder in the ACC and shoots well enough to stretch Duke's zone defense, which it was not using extensively when the two teams met in January.

Now, it's highly doubtful that the Hokies don't make the tournament, but there's now a good chance of the Hokies dropping a seed-line, or two.

The Hokies forced the Irish into 25 percent field goal shooting in the first half, and the second half looked like more of the same when the Hokies' Kerry Blackshear Jr. sank a driving layup to put seventh-seeded Virginia Tech (21-11) up 47-26 with 15:07 left.

Notre Dame went with just a six-player rotation in tight games. The game will air live on ESPN.

Now, Notre Dame will face ACC No. 2 seed and nationally No. 5-ranked Duke, who the Irish fell to 88-66 on the road at Cameron Indoor Stadium more than a month ago, in Thursday evening's quarterfinal at 7 p.m.

In what is sure to be one of the most talked-about games in recent Virginia Tech history, the Hokies lost 71-65 to Notre Dame Wednesday in the second round of the ACC Tournament.

BUZZ WILLIAMS: Yeah, the whole ambiance of the game I thought changed after they called the first time-out.

After narrowly beating Pittsburgh in the first round of the ACC Tournament, Notre Dame basketball needed another win to keep their NCAA Tournament hopes alive. 13 points, 7 assists; Virginia Tech: Justin Bibbs 15 points; Justin Robinson 15 points, 7 assists; Chris Clarke 12 points, 5 rebounds.

"He's a flopper and he flopped really hard, sold it to the refs". "It's a Tech. I wasn't surprised. It was just a great win for us, and it was kind of emotional", Farrell said.

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"All the stuff they've been through, they're such tough dudes", Brey said.

"We disintegrated", said Williams after the game.

"But we need to get some rest".

Farrell finished with a game-high 22 points, including a 4-for-11 mark from beyond the arc, followed by 14 from junior guard Rex Pflueger, who hauled in a game-high nine rebounds, and 12 points from Colson.

The difference, though, was Colson.

Farrell's 3-pointer with 13:55 left first ignited the closing run that, initially, Virginia Tech met shot-for-shot. The second half was a different story.

Leading by seven points late in the game, the Hokies hit a cold stretch of their own. But three accurate bombs in a row by Colson, Farrell and T.J. Gibbs dug into that Tech lead and got the small pocket of Notre Dame fans believing this thing wasn't over.

That being said, Aoki feels the veteran members of the squad have stepped up for the Irish so far. "Being a leader, you have to step up". "Those are the shots that you've got to hit during those times".

"Remember when you all said we couldn't play defense, but we could play offense?"


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