Highlights from Notre Dame’s Thrilling Win Over Pitt
The fireworks came early on New Year’s Eve for the Notre Dame men’s basketball team. The Irish won an overtime thriller over Pitt in their ACC season opener Saturday afternoon. Steve Vasturia set the fireworks off with a clutch three with less than three seconds remaining to put the Irish ahead 78-77. A desperation heave by the Panthers was intercepted and the Irish prevailed.
The 24th ranked Irish improved to 12-2 on the season and should remain squarely in the Top 25 heading into their showdown on Tuesday with 6th ranked Louisville.
Bonzie Colson picked up another double-double against Pitt with a team high 21 points and 14 rebounds. Matt Farrell chipped in 16 and Vasturia’s three gave him 15 on the afternoon. VJ Beachem had another cold day shooting, however, knocking down just three of 10 shots and missing all five three point attempts.
Freshman Temple Gibbs played just 12 minutes but contributed seven points – all coming in the second half. Gibbs has been giving Notre Dame very solid minutes off the bench all season and is making a case for more minutes moving forward.
Notre Dame’s win on the road at “The Pete” in Pittsburgh is rare for the Irish. Notre Dame has won just four of their last 10 games on Pitt’s home court. Yesterday was Notre Dame’s first win there since 2013.
The Irish continue to be overtime warriors with their latest OT victory. The Irish have won 14 of their last 17 overtime contests.
Notre Dame returns to action on Tuesday night against Louisville with tip-off set for 9:00 PM ET.
Once again MIKE BREY gets every ounce of hustle, determination, and belief from these kids year after year! What a pleasure to watch a team that doesn’t have the talent of most opponents but just outhustles and out DESIRES them year after year!!! GO IRISH!! Tell king Kelly the game is WEDNESDAY! Wow another KELLY who knows nothing at ND! WE WILL SHOW UP FOR LOUISVILLE!
These guys have been to the final eight two years in a row after joining their new conference (and won the conf championship the first year). They are no longer “sneaking up” on anyone in the ACC. Yet they stepped up their game Saturday to match their opponents and did what they had to do to win. They deserve a lot of credit for that. What more should we ask of them at this point? Remember, basketball is a much longer season than football – and it has a real post season tournament that produces a real national champion. It’s a different ball game than football (which ended after our third defeat this year; more realistically, after our second loss). A lot can happen – but the fantasy won’t end with a loss against the Cardinals if that happens, the way the fantasy of ND Football ended as we were punting the ball away to MSU last September very late in quarter four, trailing by eight!
Bruce G. Curme
La Crosse, Indiana
Irish win one on the road against a meaningful opponent, what is this world coming to! Maybe its the start of a habit formation. But, the fantasy will all come to an abrupt end against the Cardinals on Tuesday.