Photo by Rick Kimball/ISD
Notre Dame Basketball

Notre Dame Upset By Radford 63-60

November 14, 2018

Notre Dame’s (2-1) cold second half shooting led to its 63-60 loss to Radford (3-0) on Wednesday night in the Joyce Center.

Notre Dame shot just 32 percent from the field in the second half and was just 1-for-11 from the three-point line. Radford took advantage of a six-minute scoring drought by the Irish, came from behind and took control of the game.

“I’ve been worried about this one for about four days because they’re old and good,” stated Notre Dame head coach Mike Brey following the loss. “They’re way better than us right now. I tip my hat to Radford. They made all the tough plays. We just have a hard time finding an offensive rhythm with our group. 

“We have a long way to go, which we knew. A lot of respect to Radford. Their old guys were old and our young guys were young. They tried. They got game situation experience. A lot of new guys doing new stuff. 

“We have to get back to work. Everyone can beat us. That’s who we are right now. We’ll keep trying to help these guys a little bit.”

Radford guard Travis Fields, Jr. hit a three-pointer with 10:24 left in the game to cut Notre Dame’s lead to just three, This was after a Rex Pflueger three-pointer that made it 52-46.

Moments later Donald Hicks stuck a three of his own to tie the game for Radford with 8:51 in regulation. This is where it went downhill for Notre Dame.

Radford went onto a 14-3 run and extended its lead to six, 61-55 with 4 minutes left in the game. However, Notre Dame didn’t give up, off a turnover freshman Prentiss Hubb drove to the hoop and laid in a finger-roll to cut the lead to four.

“We went smaller to start the second half to help ourselves offensively,” explained Brey. “We didn’t rebound very well, so we changed that up a little bit. The whole downshifting thing, you’re giving up some meat on the backboard to see if you can get on an offensive run, but we couldn’t. It didn’t help us either.” 

Unfortunately, Radford countered down the stretch when Ed Polite, Jr. put back a missed shot on the offensive bound to give the Highlanders a five-point lead, 63-68 with under a minute left in the game.

A bright spot for Notre Dame was the play of John Mooney, the junior scored a career-high 24 points and brought down 12 rebounds for the Irish in the loss.

“What’s overshadowed was John was really good,”  Brey said. “He played really well. We wan t to build on that a little bit. “

Radford shot an efficient 56 percent from the field in the second half and shot 42 percent from the field in the game. The Highlanders hot shooting second half the reason for their success.

Caleb Tanner led his team in scoring with 20 points and also hit six three-pointers, all from deep three-point range. Polite, Jr. added a double-double in a high energy night, 16 points and 11 rebounds.

It took over two minutes for the first points to be put on the board, but with 17:53 left in the first half, Mooney hit a three-pointer to get Notre Dame on the board first.

Radford countered with a layup on the other end by Polite, Jr., to get points on the board, but Mooney caught fire and hit a three-pointer on two of the next three possessions for the Irish.

Notre Dame jumped out to a quick 9-2 lead to open the game.

Radford was able to hit a three-pointer of its own to cut the lead to four. Notre Dame kept feeding the hot hand as  Mooney nailed his fourth three-pointer of the game. This was followed by a (Robby) Carmody three-pointer on the next possession after a team-block.

The Irish led 15-5 with 11:46 after a quick 6-0 run driven by great three-point shooting.

The Highlanders kept fighting and started to hit three-pointers led by Tanner who hit four three-pointers in the first half.

Notre Dame led throughout, but at one point in the first half, Radford got within one-point, 24-23 when Tanner drove to the hoop and laid in a finger roll.

Mooney countered with his sixth and final three-pointer of the half on the next possession to spark an 8-0 Notre Dame, run to give the Irish a 32-23 lead.

The Irish rode the run into a 34-26 lead going into halftime.

Notre Dame hit eight three-pointers in the first half and was a big reason for the first half success. They shot 44 percent from the three-point line and 40 percent from the field. Mooney led all scorers with 18 points (6-for-8 from three-point range) and also added seven rebounds.

Radford was led by Tanner who hit four three-pointers and led his team with 14 points. The Highlanders caught fire after poor shooting to start the game and finished shooting 31 percent overall and 35 percent from three-point range.

Irish Sports Daily
Final Box Score
Irish Sports Daily
Final Notre Dame Stats


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