Georgia Tech Nips Notre Dame At Buzzer, 62-60
Freshman guard Josh Okogie hit a layup at the buzzer to lift Georgia Tech to a 62-60 win over No. 14 Notre Dame on Saturday in Atlanta.
The Irish (17-5), who began Atlantic Coast Conference play with five-straight wins, are now 6-3 in league play and have lost three of their last four.
Georgia Tech has now beaten three Top 25 teams at McCamish Pavilion this season: No. 9 North Carolina, No. 6 Florida State and now the 14th-ranked Irish.
Trailing by five points with 3:30 remaining, Notre Dame junior guard Matt Farrell stole a pass from Georgia Tech junior forward Ben Lammers off a rebound and immediately hit a 3-pointer to cut the Yellow Jackets’ lead to 60-58.
Notre Dame got a defensive stop, then a bucket by senior wing V.J. Beachem tied the score at 60 with 2:45 left. The Irish, however, would miss their final three field goal attempts to open the door for Georgia Tech.
Okogie, who scored 35 points in a win over Florida State on Wednesday, missed two free throws with 35.8 seconds. Notre Dame ran the clock down to 7 seconds on the ensuing posseson, but a missed shot by Farrell led to a fast-break for the Yellow Jackets.
Okogie battled through some contact from Notre Dame freshman guard T.J. Gibbs to finish at the rim as time expired.
Lammers finished with 15 points and 10 rebounds. Junior guard Tadric Jackson scored a career-high 25 points on 11-of-19 shooting off the bench to lead Georgia Tech (13-8, 5-4).
“My time came and I performed,” Jackson told ESPN after the game. “Coach said it was going to be my game.”
Beachem scored 23 points to lead Notre Dame. Farrell added 15 and junior forward Bonzie Colson had 13 points and 13 rebounds. Senior guard Steve Vasturia was held to just five points in 39 minutes.
Notre Dame had trouble rebounding for the second straight game. After getting manhandled Tuesday in a loss to No. 12 Virginia, Georgia Tech out-rebounded Notre Dame 37-29 — including a 21-10 advantage in the first half.
Those rebounding numbers led to 16 second-chance points for the Yellow Jackets, who are in the first year under head coach Josh Pastner.
The Irish guards had trouble getting to the rim Saturday, stifled by Georgia Tech’s shot blockers. According to KenPom, the Yellow Jackets entered the game with a block percentage of 16.5, fourth-best in the country. Saturday, they recorded seven blocks.
Notre Dame returns to action Monday against No. 17 Duke. Tip-off is set for 7 p.m. on ESPN.