The Fighting Irish took on the Scarlet Knights on Wednesday night in the Second Round of the Big East Tournament. Notre Dame donned their new lime green uniforms that they will be wearing throughout March. The Irish took the regular season match up between the two schools.
Notre Dame started out well against the Scarlet Knights. They built an 8-point lead by the 10-minute mark despite having to send Eric Atkins and Jerian Grant to the bench early with 2 fouls. The Irish upped the lead to 14 with 4 minutes remaining in the first half. Tom Knight lead the Fighting Irish in the first half with 10 points and 4 rebounds. Notre Dame led 33-19.
Mike Brey continued with his 8-man rotation that began with the starters: Atkins, Grant, Connaughton, Knight and Cooley. Sherman, Auguste and Biedscheid came off the bench.
The Fighting Irish held on in the 2nd half despite a valiant effort by the Scarlet Knights. Every time the Irish pulled away, the Knights would storm back. But, Notre Dame outlasted the Rutgers based on their 1st half performance.
Notre Dame was led by Pat Connaughton who had 21 points. He did most of his damage from the 3-point line where he was 6 of 8. Tom Knight added 18 points and 9 rebounds. Both of these totals were career highs.
Notre Dame won despite poor performances by Jerian Grant and Jack Cooley. The two players combined for 13 points on 4 of 16 shooting.
Notre Dame moves on to the third round where they will play Marquette who defeated the Irish, 72-64.