Feb 10, 2013, 2:14 PM EDT
If you watched last night’s epic battle between Notre Dame and Louisville, you’re probably still trying to wrap your head around what happened at Purcell Pavilion.
This game was over. Notre Dame was about to do the unthinkable – lose at home for the third time this season.
But then, the Irish did the improbable, rallying from eight points down with under a minute to play, before defeating the #11 Cardinals in five overtimes, 104-101.
It was the fifth time in the last six meetings that the teams went to overtime, and the seventh in 11 matchups since the Cardinals joined the BIG EAST in 2005. It was also the longest regular season game in conference history.
Here’s a closer look at some of the crazy facts and statistics from the big win:
- After Cam Biedscheid tied the game at 37 with a jumper with 11:30 to play, the Irish went more than ten minutes without a basket, until Pat Connaughton‘s layup with 1:09 remaining.
- Jerian Grant hadn’t made a field goal all game, before hitting a tough three with 44.2 seconds remaining. He scored 12 points in those final 45 seconds, turning a seemingly insurmountable eight-point deficit into a tie game.
- Three of Notre Dame’s five starters fouled out – Jack Cooley picked up his fifth with 6:54 left in the second half, Tom Knight with 51 seconds to play, and Jerian Grant headed to the bench with 1:57 remaining in the first overtime.
- Garrick Sherman didn’t see the floor until Grant left the game, but ended up being one of the heroes of the night. Sherman finished with 17 points in 22 minutes, and scored the post-game interview with ESPN.
- He didn’t even start the game, but Biedscheid was one of six players to log at least 50 minutes.
- Eric Atkins played 60 minutes, tying the Notre Dame record set by Chris Thomas in 2002.
- Six Irish players finished in double figures (Grant – 19, Sherman – 17, Connaughton – 16, Biedscheid – 14, Atkins – 14, Cooley – 11) and two logged double-doubles (Connaughton – 16 points, 14 rebounds; Cooley – 11 points, 11 rebounds).
- The teams committed 66 fouls and eight players fouled out.
- They combined for 97 free throws and 158 shots from the field.
- The game was tied 16 times and there were 26 lead changes.
- Both teams finished the game with 54 rebounds.
- Both teams attempted 25 three-pointers.
- There were 70 points scored off the bench – 39 for the Irish and 31 by the Cardinals.
- John Gaffney officiated 105 minutes of basketball on Saturday. He refereed the Marquette – DePaul game in Milwaukee, and then drove to South Bend after being called upon as a replacement, due to the winter storm affecting the northeast.
For more on the epic night, check out the game recap on UND.com, as well as my Instant Classic blog post, which includes the highlights from Fighting Irish Digital Media, as well as post-game reaction from Dick Vitale and Dan Shulman.
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