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Oklahoma Catches Fire From Deep To Defeat Notre Dame In Jimmy V Classic

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Notre Dame was unable to defend the three-point line Tuesday night allowing Oklahoma to hit 15 triples in an 85-80 defeat of the Irish in the 2018 Jimmy V Classic at Madison Square Garden.

The Irish hit nearly 50 percent of their shots in the second half, but it was not enough to slow down the red-hot Sooners.

Check out Blue & Gold Illustrated's half-by-half recap of the Notre Dame loss.


With a young team going on the road for the first time, Mike Brey was likely worried about how his team would start offensively. It was not pretty for the Irish during the opening five-plus minutes.

Notre Dame hit just 2-of-12 attempts to start with junior forward John Mooney connecting on both for five points with the Irish down 12-5 with 14:53 left. Mooney also had seven rebounds during the stretch. Forward Brady Manek had five points for Oklahoma to pace the Sooners early.

The Irish found their stride a bit over the next five-plus minutes hitting 50 percent of their next 12 attempts to keep within striking distance of the Sooners at 24-19 with 9:39 left in the opening half.

Forwards Juwan Durham and Nate Laszewski entered the contest during the stretch and each added four points while guard Rex Pflueger displayed his hustle on the glass allowing him to get multiple assists.

The teams trade buckets before the Irish turned defense into offense to spark a 6-0 run. Pflueger and guard Prentiss Hubb helped create turnovers on one end, which led to buckets via Pflueger and Mooney to make it one possession game with Notre Dame down just 26-25.

Mooney recorded his 10th rebound on the next possession after his dunk in transition, which was followed up by a bucket from Hubb to give Notre Dame the 27-26 lead with under eight minutes to play in the half.

Both teams continued to struggle a bit from the floor with the Sooners hitting just two of their next six shots after falling behind for the first time in the game while the Irish made just 1-of-5. Oklahoma regained the advantage at 31-30 going into the under-4 media timeout with programs shooting under 40 percent.

A jumper by Durham made it 33-32 Oklahoma before the Sooners were able to pull away a bit with a 7-0 run fueled by a three-pointer from guard Aaron Calixte. The run extended the Oklahoma lead to 40-32 in quick fashion.

The half ended without a run from either team with the Sooners taking a 43-36 lead into the break. Notre Dame, led by 11 points and 11 rebounds from Mooney, shot just 36.6 percent in the first half (15-of-41) while allowing the Sooners to hit 16-of-36 (44.4 percent). Oklahoma also connected on 7-of-11 (63.6 percent) behind the arc.


Oklahoma started the second half with a quick 4-0 run behind buckets from guard Christian James and Calixte to push the Sooner lead to 47-36.

Notre Dame quickly responded with a 9-0 getting five points from guard TJ Gibbs and back-to-back jumpers via Mooney to make it a on possession contest a t 47-45 with 15:51 left.

After the Sooners got back on the board, Laszewski knocked down a triple which was followed by a Durham dunk to give the Irish a 50-49 lead. It was the start of eight-straight Irish points for Durham to push his total to 14 with 10:27 left in the contest.

Oklahoma got back on track getting back-to-back triples from Manek and guard Miles Reynolds to regain the edge at 55-50. Oklahoma took a 59-56 lead to the under-12 media timeout.

A pair of free throws from Irish guard Dane Goodwin cut the Sooners lead to 59-58 before Lon Kruger’s group got hot from behind the arc.

Guard Matt Freeman connected on two triples while James and Manek each added one for four-straight makes for the Sooners to slowly build at 71-67 lead with under seven minutes to play in the half. Gibbs and Harvey each hit two field goals to keep the Irish close.

Freeman continued his hot shooting with another triple out of the break to extend the Oklahoma lead to 74-67. At the time, Notre Dame had hit 7-of-14 three-point attempts in the second half and 14-of-25 overall. The Sooners led 76-70 going into the under-4 media timeout.

After Gibbs hit two of three free throws following being fouled on a three-point attempt, James connected on a tough jumper to keep the Sooners up by two possessions. Gibbs quickly answered again with his fourth three-pointer of the contest to force a quick timeout by Brey with his team down 78-75 with just over three minutes left.

A free throw from Goodwin made it an 80-78 lead for Oklahoma, but James hit a contested three-pointer to make it a two-possession game and ultimately derail the Irish chances. James connected on a pair of free throws up just 83-80 to officially close out Notre Dame for an 85-80 victory inside of Madison Square Garden.

Gibbs led all Irish scorers with 18 points in a losing effort while Mooney finished with 15 points and 14 rebounds. Durham added a career-high 15 points. Notre Dame shot 41.9 percent (31-of-74) for the game and just 25.0 percent (7-of-25) behind the arc.

James led all scorers with 25 points and 10 rebounds to push the Sooners to victory. Oklahoma shot 47.1 percent (32-of-68) in the win and 51.7 percent (15-of-29) on its three-point attempts.


Talk about it inside Rockne’s Roundtable

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