November 25, 2008 – Notre Dame 81, Texas 80
We all remember the 2008-2009 season — who doesn’t?
Notre Dame came into the season pre-ranked No. 9 and moved up to No. 7 heading into December. It was primed to be a great season until a stretch of seven out of eight consecutive games were to ranked opponents. Five of those were to top-ten teams. The team’s season was ultimately dismantled after only winning one game during the rigorous part of their schedule.
But there was one bright side to the season. The showdown between No. 6 Texas and No. 8 Notre Dame during the Maui Invitational was one for the books.
Luke Harangody was doing, well, Luke Harangody things. The three-time consensus All-American had a breakout Sophomore campaign that ended as Big East Player of the Year. Maui showed us just how good he was going to be.
It was an unforgettable performance from the big man. 29-points and 13-rebounds had fans sure that they were in for a great season. Harangody seemingly could do no wrong. He proved it as he dropped a 40-footer as the shot clock expired.
His performance was accompanied by that of Kyle McAlarney. The sharpshooter came away with five three-pointers and 19-points. Even with their performances, this was still a close game as the clock wound down.
Notre Dame’s eight-point lead with 2:40 remaining wasn’t enough of a cushion.
The Longhorns comeback
Harangody was giving a performance that is still talked about during the Maui Invitational, yet he almost cost the Irish the game. With two free throw attempts and a one-point lead, Harangody had the opportunity to secure nothing worse than a trip to overtime.
Whether it was fatigue or just a couple of bad bounces, he missed both.
Texas’ AJ Abrams from half court gave it a chance with 3.5 seconds left. Bouncing off the front of the rim, Notre Dame took the victory.