Notre Dame came up short against a ranked opponent again on Tuesday night dropping a lopsided contest to #12 Virginia 71-54 at Purcell Pavilion. The #14 Fighting Irish were coming off an easy home win over the weekend to Syracuse but were unable to solve the Cavalier defense and have still yet to beat UVA in four tries in ACC play since joining the conference.
The Virginia defense frustrated the Irish offense all night long by taking away the three point shot. Notre Dame connected on just three of 18 attempts from beyond the arc while Virginia nailed 9 of 19 from long distance. That frustration spilled over to the free throw line as well where the Irish were an uncharacteristic 64.7% from the line (11 of 17). Virginia capitalized here as well by making 12 of their 14 attempts – all of which came in the second half.
VJ Beachem, fresh off a career high 30 points on Saturday against the Orange, continued his rollercoaster season of ups and downs with just 3 points on 1 of 10 shooting. While Beachem is averaging 14.7 points a game this season, he has five games now with 6 or fewer points.
Virginia’s London Perrantes didn’t have the same problem despite playing with a touch of the flu. Perrantes scored a game high 22 points with five three pointers in leading the Cavaliers to victory.
With Notre Dame’s struggles shooting the ball, Virginia dominated the Irish on the glass Tuesday night with a 38-22 edge in rebounds. Bonzie Colson led the ACC in rebounds heading into the night but pulled down a season low three.
Virginia has dominated Notre Dame since the Irish joined the ACC. The Cavaliers are now 4-0 over Notre Dame with an average margin of victory of more than 13 points. Notre Dame has now dropped 10 straight overall to Virginia dating back to 1981.
Hopefully the Irish don’t run into the Cavaliers again this season in either the ACC or NCAA Tournaments.
The Game Was Over When
With 5:21 remaining in the game, Bonzie Colson knocked down a jumper to make this a six point game 57-51, but the game turned on the next possession. UVA’s Ty Jerome made a runner in the lane to put the Cavaliers back up eight points and started a 14-3 run to end the game and beat the Irish by 17 on their home floor.
Notre Dame had remained close throughout the game and trailed at the break by just one, but after Jerome’s bucket with 4:52 left, the Irish missed all but one of their remaining shots.
Notre Dame Players of the Game
- Bonzie Colson – Despite a quiet night on the glass, Colson chipped in 20 points on 8 of 11 shooting keeping the Irish in the game for much of the night before Virginia pulled away at the end.
- Steve Vasturia – The only other Irish starter in double figures, Vasturia scored 14 points and pulled down a team high 5 rebounds.
Up Next for Notre Dame Basketball
The Irish are back in action Saturday afternoon with a noon tip off in Atlanta against Georgia Tech. The Yellow Jackets are sporting an 11-8 record on the season after dropping back to back games to Virginia Tech and UVA. Tech did, however, upset North Carolina at home on New Year’s Eve. The game will be on ESPNU.