Irish kick off 2019-20 season with exhibition against Capital
Observer Sports Staff | Wednesday, October 30, 2019
The Notre Dame men’s basketball team tipped off their season at Purcell Pavilion last evening with an exhibition game win over Capital University. With the victory over the Crusaders, the Irish move to 39-0 in exhibitions under head coach Mike Brey. After a disappointing season last year, the Irish were steadily able to cruise past the Crusaders, notching a 72-43 victory.
The Irish showed a balanced offensive scheme as they started three guards: graduate student Rex Pflueger, sophomore Prentiss Hubb and senior T.J. Gibbs. The guards shared the ball well and put four players over double digits in scoring; senior forwards John Mooney and Juwan Durham led the way with 12 points apiece. Mooney recorded a double double on the night, pulling in 11 rebounds; he also dished out three assists and took two steals, while Durham ended up with an 86% field goal percentage. Hubb in particular shared the ball very well with his teammates, recording six assists on the night.
On the other side of the ball, the Irish defense was able to keep the Crusaders in check, holding them to 27% from the field. The Irish were able to dominate the glass as well, pulling down 46 rebounds to the Crusaders’ 38. The bench came in hot as well, recording 31 points on the evening.
The game was relatively tight midway through the first half, with both teams sitting at 16 points. The Irish were able to pull away, however, giving themselves a 10-point cushion heading into the second half, 35-25. The Irish were able to pull away in the second period, taking a 52-32 lead midway through the second half. The Irish ended up outscoring the Crusaders 14-2 in the first eight minutes.
Next up for the Irish, they will host Bellarmine for one more exhibition game before tipping off their regular season. The game will start at 7 p.m. at Purcell Pavilion and will air live on the ACC Network Extra via the WatchESPN app.