Late Night Snacks: Notre Dame escapes with ACC road win over North Carolina; Michigan State, Oklahoma earn blowout wins

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source: AP
AP

GAME OF THE DAY: No. 13 Notre Dame 71, No. 18 North Carolina 70

Many questioned if the Fighting Irish were legitimate after an easy non-conference schedule and an iffy defense and bench but Notre Dame held off a late North Carolina rally to pick up a huge ACC road win. Despite senior guard Jerian Grant struggling to a 1-for-8 shooting night, the Irish had a balanced offensive effort around him as Zach Auguste scored 14 of his game-high 18 points in the second half and Pat Connaughton added 16 points. Marcus Paige led North Carolina with 15 points but had another sluggish shooting night, going 6-for-17 from the field. Before the game, North Carolina honored late alum Stuart Scott with a moment of silence and a patch on their jerseys.

IMPORTANT OUTCOMES

1. No. 16 Oklahoma 70, No. 10 Texas 49

This one got ugly very quickly as the Sooners made a statement in the Big 12 with a road thrashing of Texas. Oklahoma jumped out to a 33-14 halftime lead and never looked back as they played with more physicality on the interior and generally came out with more effort and attitude. Four of five Sooner starters finished in double figures and the fifth finished with nine points. Buddy Hield led Oklahoma with 13 points while TaShawn Thomas had a double-double of 12 points and 11 rebounds. Thomas also unleashed this vicious poster dunk on Cameron Ridley.

2. Michigan State 70, Indiana 50

An ugly first half for Indiana led to an easy home victory for the Spartans. Michigan State earned its first Big Ten win of the season by jumping out to a 19-4 lead that turned into a 32-13 lead in the first frame. A vintage defensive performance from Tom Izzo’s ballclub held Indiana to only one double-digit scorer as Yogi Ferrell finished with 17 points. Denzel Valentine paced Michigan State with 15 points and six rebounds while senior Branden Dawson added 14 points and 13 rebounds.

3. Iowa 70, Nebraska 59

Even though Nebraska rallied to take the lead with about nine minutes left in the second half, Iowa made a late push and earned a home Big Ten win. Aaron White had a solid outing with 23 points and nine rebounds to lead the Hawkeyes while Gabriel Olaseni had 18 points (12-for-13 free throws) and five rebounds. Iowa now stands at 2-0 in Big Ten play and they look like they’ve fixed some early-season issues consistency issues that were plaguing them.

4. No. 14 West Virginia 78, Texas Tech 67

The return of point guard Juwan Staten (illness) helped the Mountaineers move to 2-0 in the Big 12 with two road wins as West Virginia used a second-half run to pull away. Staten finished with 16 points as the Mountaineer defense forced 22 Texas Tech turnovers.

BUZZER-BEATER OF THE NIGHT: Texas State junior forward Emani Gant banked in his first career 3-point attempt to force a second overtime as the Bobcats eventually earned a huge Sun Belt road win over conference favorite Georgia State.

STARRED

1. Wofford’s Karl Cochran

Cochran scored the final eight points for the Terriers, including two 3-pointers in the game’s final minute, to help Wofford knock off Chattanooga, 68-64. The Terriers trailed by 10 at halftime on the road, but Cochran had a career-high 33 points and six 3-pointers to go along with five steals in helping with a Southern Conference comeback win.

2. Green Bay’s Keifer Sykes and Jordan Fouse

Sykes, a senior point guard, stepped up with 28 points and four assists while Fouse, a junior forward just missed a triple-double with 16 points, 15 rebounds and nine assists to lead the Phoenix to a Horizon League victory over Wright State.

3. Wagner’s Marcus Burton

Two overtimes were needed for the Seahawks to topple Mt. St. Mary’s and Burton was a big reason why as the senior guard had 38 points and six rebounds.

4. East Tennessee State’s Jalen Riley

In a tight conference clash, the senior guard had 26 points, eight assists, three rebounds and two steals in a two-point win over Samford. It was Riley’s seventh game this season that he’s scored at least 20 points.

STRUGGLED

1. Indiana’s James Blackmon Jr.

The stud freshman guard has been a scoring machine this season, but the McDonald’s All-American was held to eight points on just 1-for-14 shooting from the field.

2. Georgia State’s R.J. Hunter

Hunter had a cold-shooting night as he was 3-for-16 from the field and 0-for-10 from the 3-point line in a double-overtime loss at home to Texas State. The junior also had six turnovers on the night.

3. The Texas offense

The Longhorns were the much bigger team but forced a lot more perimeter shots in a bad loss at home to Oklahoma. Texas shot 30 percent from the field (18-for-60) and 28 percent (6-for-21) from 3-point range.

NOTABLES

  • The Citadel ended a 19-game road losing streak with an 85-83 overtime win over UNC Greensboro. Ashton Moore had 28 points to lead the Bulldogs, who hadn’t won a road game since Feb. 20, 2013.