GAME NOTES: Both the Notre Dame Fighting Irish and Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets look to rebound from recent losses as they clash in Atlantic Coast Conference action Saturday at McCamish Pavilion.
Notre Dame has won two of its last three games, including a 79-77 edging of then No. 7-ranked Duke. But the Irish suffered a loss in their last matchup, dropping a 77-70 decision to NC State to even out their ACC record.
Georgia Tech has had less success recently than Notre Dame, as the Yellow Jackets have lost their last two contests, including a 79-57 defeat at the hands of a Duke team Notre Dame had beaten just days earlier. Georgia Tech has lost three of its last four overall and is still in search of its first ACC victory.
The Yellow Jackets hold a 6-2 all-time series advantage. The most recent meeting was in 2007, which saw Georgia Tech erase a nine-point deficit in the second half to win.
Notre Dame was outscored 25-9 at the free-throw line by NC State in its last outing. Garrick Sherman scored a game-high 21 points and pulled down a tremendous 18 rebounds for the double-double in the loss. He shot 9-of-19 from the floor and added four assists to his stat total. Pat Connaughton netted 15 points and five rebounds for the Irish, who fell to 10-5 on the season. Eric Atkins chipped in 14 points and a team-high five assists.
The Irish took a huge hit when leading scorer Jerian Grant (19.0 ppg) was ruled academically ineligible a few games ago The scoring burden for the Irish now falls on the shoulders of Sherman (15.1 ppg), who tops the Irish with 8.3 rpg. Eric Atkins (13.6 ppg) and Connaughton (13.3 ppg) will need to step up as well for Notre Dame, which nets a healthy 79.3 ppg.
For the first time this season, the Yellow Jackets were outrebounded in a contest, as Duke battled back and grabbed a 79-57 win over Georgia Tech in ACC play. Marcus Georges-Hunt scored a team-high 18 points on 8-of-12 shooting from the floor, hitting 2-of-4 3-pointers in the process. Daniel Miller chipped in 14 points and eight rebounds in the loss. The Yellow Jackets still shot an impressive 49.1 percent from the field against the Blue Devils, but didn't hit a single free-throw, going 0-of-6 in the game.
Trae Golden and Georges-Hunt are Georgia Tech's leading scorers this season, averaging 12.6 and 12.1 ppg, respectively. Miller, through 15 games, is shooting 61.3 percent from the floor for the Yellow Jackets, and leads the team with 30 blocked shots. He's also second on the team in rebounding with a 7.9 rpg average. The leader in the department, Robert Carter Jr, pulls down 9.3 rpg and nets an average of 10.3 ppg. Carter is out though after having left knee surgery.
Both ACC teams are out to decent starts on the season, but Georgia Tech can fall behind quickly in conference play with a third straight loss. Notre Dame should come out firing.
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