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Men’s Basketball: Team drops second straight conference game on road

Matt Lozar | Thursday, January 27, 2005

Call it an ugly end to a disappointing road trip.Scoring six points in the last 8 minutes, 24 seconds, the Irish (12-5, 4-3 Big East) lost 65-60 to Villanova (11-4, 3-3) Wednesday night at the Wachovia Center.The Irish finished their three game road trip 1-2. The Wildcats closely guarded Notre Dame’s long-distance threats – the Irish only made 6-of-19 3-pointers, and the Irish were forced to drive to the basket and pound the ball inside to stay with Villanova. That adjustment worked, as Notre Dame held a 52-46 lead midway through the second half. From that point, the Irish only made three field goals.The Wildcats used three straight 3-pointers to turn that six-point deficit into a 55-52 lead. They were never able to close the game out until the final minute because the Wildcats were almost as cold from the field as the Irish.The Wildcats had a 59-54 lead when Chris Thomas drove to the hoop and was fouled to bring the Irish within two after converting the three-point play. That was Notre Dame’s first field goal in 5:10.After a wide-open layup miss by Will Sheridan and one free throw from Randy Foye, Thomas almost made a great play to bring the Irish within one.But his shot off the glass went halfway down and rimmed out. The Wildcats made enough free throws down the stretch to close out their second straight win and their first over the Irish since Jan. 6, 2002.Foye led all scorers with 22 points on 7-of-20 shooting. Villanova guard Allan Ray scored 21. Torin Francis – who looked as comfortable as he has all season in the post – paced the Irish with 17 points. Chris Quinn scored 13 points, 10 coming in the first half.Thomas finished with 12 points, eight rebounds and six assists.The Irish couldn’t find their rhythm early in the first half, falling behind 23-13. Brey called a timeout and the Irish eventually clawed themselves back into the game. After a Mike Nardi layup put the Wildcats ahead 27-24, the Irish 10-0 run to build a seven-point lead they would carry into the locker room.The Irish return to the court Sunday when they host Connecticut in a national television contest.

NOTRE DAME 65, Villanova 60 at the WACHOVIA CENTER

NOTRE DAME (12-5, 4-3)Thomas 4-14 3-3 12, Cornette 2-8 0-0 4, Francis 7-11 5-8 19, Quinn 4-9 2-3 13, Falls 1-5 1-4 3, Latimore 1-5 0-0 2, Cornett 2-3 0-2 4, Carter 1-1 0-0 3

Villanova (11-4, 3-3)Foye 7-20 6-8 22, Ray 8-16 1-2 21, Sumpter 4-11 2-4 11, Nardi 2-10 2-2 6, Sheridan 1-3 3-4 5, Charles 0-0 0-0 0, Austin 0-0 0-0 0

1st 2nd Total NOTRE DAME 37 23 60 Villanova 30 35 65

3-point goals: Notre Dame 6-19 (Quinn 3-6, Carter 1-1, Thomas 1-3, Falls 1-4, Cornette 0-5), Villanova 7-15 (Ray 4-6, Foye 2-3, Sumpter 1-2, Nardi 0-5). Fouled out: Falls (ND). Rebounds: Notre Dame 43 (Francis 13), Villanova 39 (Sheridan 12). Assists: Notre Dame 13 (Thomas 6), Villanova 9 (Nardi 5). Total fouls: Notre Dame 17, Villanova 14.