Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Maui Day 2: Irish Edge #7 Texas in a Thriller, 81-80

Before this game, the closest game in this years annual Maui tournament was 18.  This game can right down to the very end however, resulting in a one point win for the Irish.  The game stayed within single digits the whole game and near the 2 minute mark it seemed Notre Dame was going to pull away for the victory once they extended their late lead to 8.  However, late 3s from the Texas team and missed free throws brought the Irish lead to 1 with 4.5 seconds left.  Harangody was fouled instantly and sent to the line.  He missed both, Texas' AJ Abrams grabbed the board and hoisted up the shot from around half court that was on target, but it hit off the front of the rim and gave the Irish the victory.

Harangody did everything he could for the Irish.  He contributed 29 points and 13 rebounds.  He even banked a deep 3 from about 4o feet as the shot clock expired in the second half.  Even though Harangody missed that last two foul shots that could of potentially threw the game away, his effort still propelled the Irish to their impressive win.  A win is a win and the team got it, as Gody said himself after the game, you can't keeping reflecting on the mistakes you made and what you could have done differently.  

Kyle McAlarney also had a stellar night.  He hit five 3s and had a total of 19 points, he was the go to guy for the Irish tonight when they needed a bucket.  Tory Jackson also had another good night with 16 points and 7 assists.  Everyone really played on their A game, which is the main reason why the Irish were able to defeat their fellow top 10 opponent.  

Notre Dame will likely take on North Carolina tomorrow night for the championship.  If Notre Dame wants to take down #1 they will definitely have to play their A game...and then some.  However, look for tomorrows game to be a close hard fought battle with a couple of family rivalries going on.  Luke Zeller's brother, Tyler, is the Tar Heels and Ben Hansbrough's brother, also Tyler, is also on the Tar Heels.  However, Tyler Zeller will not play for the Tar Heels due to injury and Ben Hansbrough will not play for the Irish under transfer rules.  While the family members may not actually play against each other, the competitiveness will still be there.  

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