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Notre Dame Basketball

Game Thread | No. 11 Notre Dame vs. No. 6 North Carolina

March 10, 2021
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ACC Tournament |No. 11 Notre Dame vs. No. 6 North Carolina


Date: March 10th

Time: 9:00 p.m. ET

Where: Greensboro Coliseum | Greensboro, N.C.

TV:  ACC Network | Dan Schulman, Jay Bilas and Allison Williams  

Line: North Carolina -6.5 


Quick Facts 

- Mike Brey is 4-11 against Roy Williams and North Carolina. 

- North Carolina leads the series 26-8 and 9-3 in ACC play. 

- Notre Dame is 5-1 all-time – and on a five-game win streak - in the Greensboro Coliseum during ACC Tournament play.

- Notre Dame has won its first game of conference tournament action in 12 of the last 13 seasons.

- Prentiss Hubb enters the ACC Tournament No. 10 in the nation in total assists. 


THE STARTERS

Notre Dame

Name Points Rebounds Assists
Prentiss Hubb 14.6 3.3 6.0
Nik Djogo 5.2 3.0 0.9
Trey Wertz 8.6 2.7 2.4
Nate Laszewski 13.3 7.4 0.8
Juwan Durham 10.7 5.5 1.4

North Carolina  

Name Points Rebounds Assists
Caleb Love 10.4 2.6 3.8
Leaky Black 5.6 5.2 2.6
Kerwin Walton 8.3 1.5 1.9
Garrison Brooks 10.6 6.9 1.4
Armando Bacot 11.7 7.6 0.8

Preview

Points Per Game
Notre Dame: 73.2
North Carolina: 74.8

Opponent Points Per Game
Notre Dame: 73.3
North Carolina: 69.7

FG%
Notre Dame: 46.5%
North Carolina: 44.2%

Rebounds Per Game
Notre Dame: 33.5
North Carolina: 42.8

Assists Per Game
Notre Dame: 15.2
North Carolina: 15.7

Blocks Per Game
Notre Dame: 3.9
North Carolina: 4.4

Steals Per Game
Notre Dame: 4.2
North Carolina: 7.1

Notre Dame pulled off an incredible comeback win over Wake Forest on Tuesday night as Trey Wertz sunk the game-winning three at the buzzer. It’s a moment the team surely deserved after fighting through the ups and downs of the 2020-21 season, but one they won’t be able to celebrate for long. 

North Carolina will face the Irish on Wednesday night and Notre Dame can’t afford to fall into a double-digit hole against the Tar Heels. 

The good news is Notre Dame should be confident heading into its rematch with North Carolina as the Irish could have easily won the December matchup, but fell 66-65 in Chapel Hill. 

Notre Dame will need to improve its defensive rebounding to have a shot to advance in the ACC Tournament and it’s an area they’ve struggled with lately. At one point against Wake Forest, the Demon Deacons held an advantage on the boards 15-2. Notre Dame did close that gap to 38-32 at the end of the game, but North Carolina is a different animal. 

In December, the Tar Heels dominated the glass (and that’s putting it nicely) 49-26, which included an incredible 22-3 advantage on the offensive glass. That can’t happen again and the Irish will need to find a physical mindset and that’s something that flashed in the last seven minutes of last night’s game. 

"There is a toughness about them,” said Notre Dame head coach Mike Brey. “There is a togetherness about this group even through everything they've been through. They've had each other's back. I thought the lineup we had on the floor really defended well together.” 

Juwan Durham and Nate Laszewski have been the bigs for Notre Dame, but Brey expects to play freshman Matt Zona against North Carolina. In the first meeting, Zona played 18 minutes and pulled down five boards. 

“Matt Zona, another big body, who played well at Carolina and played some minutes for us because they're so big,” stated Brey. W”e have to have him ready to go lean on some of their size.” 

On offense, Notre Dame will need to get Laszewski involved. The junior forward has scored in double-digits just twice in the last five games with a high of 11 points. Laszewski was just 1-for-6 from the field on Tuesday and scored two points. In Chapel Hill, Laszewski scored 25 points, including going 7-for-11 from three-point range. 

Notre Dame will also likely be battling a very pro-North Carolina crowd in Greensboro as Chapel Hill is less than an hour away. 

“There was a great energy in the building and it was a road atmosphere,” said Brey. “The Wake fans really helped their team believe, especially early. They were a factor in the game. Tomorrow night, we know we’ll have it on steroids with light blue up in those stands.” 

At the end of the day, Notre Dame’s rebounding issues don’t provide a ton of confidence for an upset, but if they can somehow figure it out, the Irish could have a shot. 

Prediction: North Carolina 74 Notre Dame 68

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Game Thread | No. 11 Notre Dame vs. No. 6 North Carolina

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