Notre Dame basketball was in action Saturday afternoon. For the Irish, a late arriving offense saved the day as Notre Dame escaped with a 63-56 win.
Some days they fall and some days they don’t. Saturday was the latter in terms of Notre Dame’s shooting. In the last regular season non-conference game of the season, Notre Dame was supposed to experiment and work on any last tweaks as the Irish head toward ACC play.
The only tweak that was worked on was Temple Gibbs ankle. The guard went down gingerly twice in the first half. A tape job later, he was right back in the game after the trainers had a look.
With Coppin State coming in at 0-14 in search for their first win of the season, they were prepared. The Eagles came in with a game plan and made the proper adjustments along the way. Defensively it was their confidence that surprised the Irish, who scored 100 in their last game.
At first, it was the three-pointers that wouldn’t fall for the Irish. Coppin State saw blood and stayed calm and kept the game close. The further the game got into the second half, the Eagles pounced.
With their confidence through the roof, every shot the Eagles took was falling. For Notre Dame, it was more of the same cold shooting.
A 1-for-12 shooting stretch from the Irish gave Coppin State their largest lead of the game. The Irish had their backs against the wall and had to fight back. But the Irish were able to finally get the lid off the basket and scratch their way back into the game.
With just a few ticks over nine minutes left to play, Notre Dame’s offense did all they needed to survive. The Irish got going with a couple of driving layups and finally found the mark from three-point land down the stretch. The Irish hit four three-pointers in that stretch to take control of the game.
John Mooney’s last three-pointer was enough to give Notre Dame an eight-point lead as time wound down. From there, the Irish connected on a few free throws in the final minutes to ice the game.
The Irish will head into ACC play with a 10-3 record and a date with No. 10 Virginia Tech set for New Year’s Day.