Irish rebound by knocking Miami off ACC pedestal
Greg McKenna | Thursday, February 3, 2022
Notre Dame rebounded from a disappointing home loss to No. 9 Duke by beating Miami 68-64 on Wednesday night in Coral Gables, Florida. They knocked the Hurricanes off the top of the ACC standings.
Duke held the Irish to just 43 points on 27.9% shooting from the field and 16.7% from beyond the arc Monday. Notre Dame shot just over 23% from 3 against the Hurricanes at the Watsco Center but improved to 46% shooting from the field.
Forward Paul Atkinson Jr. led the Irish with 23 points and 11 rebounds, five of which came on the offensive glass. After posting 28 points and 18 rebounds in Notre Dame’s last two games, the grad transfer from Yale went 11-for-16 from the field Wednesday.
Miami sophomore guard Isaiah Wong led the Hurricanes with 18 points. Miami shot 32% from 3 but only 43.3% from the field.
Notre Dame carried a 30-28 lead into halftime and then created some breathing room with a pair of 10-0 runs in the first 10 minutes of the second half. The Irish made 10 of their first 16 shots after halftime, which included three 3-pointers from senior guard Prentiss Hubb. The Upper Marlboro, Maryland native finished with 15 points and six assists.
Three-time ACC Freshman of the Week Blake Wesley continued to struggle with his shot Wednesday. After being held to six points with 3 of 15 shooting against the Blue Devils, Wesley went 0-for-7 from 3 and had just five points. However, the South Bend native led Notre Dame with seven assists.
Senior guard Dane Goodwin, who had his streak of double-digit scoring games broken at 20 after being held scoreless against Duke, got back on track with 14 points on 6-for-10 shooting Wednesday.
The Irish had a double-digit lead with less than four minutes to go, but Miami made a late push and cut the Irish lead to four twice in the final 30 seconds. The Irish struggled to deal with the press, as they often have over the last two seasons, but Cormac Ryan held his nerve and hit two big free throws with just over 23 seconds to go.
With the win, Notre Dame moved back into a tie for second place in the ACC, this time with Miami and North Carolina. The Irish will stay out on the road and take on NC State on Saturday, which will be their fourth game in seven days.
Notre Dame has won 12 of their last 14 games. One of those victories was a 73-65 home win over the Wolfpack.
Tipoff Saturday at the PNC Arena in Raleigh, North Carolina is scheduled for 3 p.m. The game will air on the ACC Network.