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Notre Dame Basketball

Notre Dame struggles from deep, falls to St. Bonaventure, 63-51

November 25, 2022

Notre Dame shot just 34.5% from the field and 11.8% from beyond the arc against St. Bonaventure at USB Arena in Elmont, N.Y., and the Fighting Irish drop its first game of the season, 63-51.

Forward Nate Laszweski led Notre Dame (5-1) with 11 points and added eight rebounds. 

The Irish trailed 17-7 ten minutes into the game and never recovered, going into the locker room down 31-20 for their first halftime deficit of the season. St. Bonaventure shot 46.2% from the field and 50% from deep in the first period.

Notre Dame played much better defensively in the second half, limiting the Bonnies to 35.7% shooting and five of 14 from three. But the Irish never cut the deficit to fewer than seven points the rest of the way.

The main culprit was Notre Dame’s inability to shoot from long range. The Irish hit just two of 17 three-pointers, which included missing their final 10 and all nine in the second half. This made it virtually impossible for the Irish to climb back into the game. 

The only two Irish players to shoot 50% or better from the field were Cormac Ryan and freshman forward Ven-Allen Lubin. Ryan hit four of his eight shots for nine points and four rebounds.

Lubin scored 10 points and led the Irish with a career-high 13 rebounds to go with two steals and a blocked shot. He tied a season-high by playing 24 minutes, including 17 in the second half. 

Guards Trey Wertz, JJ Starling and Dane Goodwin each struggled to get going offensively. They shot a combined 7-34 from the field and went 1-11 from deep. Wertz did, however, dish out six assists with just one turnover. 

Notre Dame still leads the all-time series against the Bonnies, 5-3.

Big Picture

The Irish failed to go undefeated against six quality mid-major opponents to start the season. This could hurt Notre Dame's NCAA Tournament resume if the program finishes in the middle of the pack in the ACC this season. 

The good news for the Irish is they have a chance for a bounce-back win next week at Purcell Pavilion, where Notre Dame is 5-0 this season. 

Up Next

The Irish return home to host No. 12 Michigan State (3-2) on Wednesday, Nov. 30, at 9:15 p.m. ET on ESPN2.

The Spartans are playing in the Phil Knight Invitational in Portland this week. 

After dropping their opening round contest to Alabama, 81-70, MSU is back in action at 12 a.m. ET on Friday to face Oregon (2-3).

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