Alas, the waiting game begins.
Notre Dame (20-14, 8-10 ACC) was outmatched in a 88-70 loss to Duke (26-6, 13-5) on Thursday evening in the quarterfinals of the ACC tournament, putting its NCAA Tournament dreams at serious risk and solely in the hands of the selection committee.
After trading blows for much of the first half, Marvin Bagley III and the highly-efficient Blue Devils proved to be too much to handle as they outscored the Irish by 14 points in the final 20 minutes. Though senior forwards Martinas Geben and Bonzie Colson were able to combine to produce 32 points — nearly half of the team’s overall total — Notre Dame was doomed by poor shooting from outside the arc, as Matt Farrell, Rex Pflueger, and TJ Gibbs, Jr. made just 5 of 22 (22.7 percent) 3-point attempts on the night.
In comparison, Duke senior Grayson Allen made his first five 3-point shots — all in the first half — and finished 23 points to supplement Bagley’s dominant line of 33 points and 17 rebounds.
Here’s what Notre Dame coach Mike Brey had to say following the tough loss:
Prior to the game, ESPN college basketball analyst Joe Lunardi had the Irish as one of the first four teams out of the big dance , sending Oklahoma, UCLA, Alabama, and Louisville on through.
It’s going to be a hot debate over the next 70 hours; we’ll find out Notre Dame’s postseason fate not long after the show begins on Sunday at 6 p.m. ET (TBS).
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