The Irish actually held the lead the vast majority of this game, but never by more than single digits, emblematic of the new ACC rivalry in which Notre Dame holds a 4-0 advantage but only by an average margin of victory of 5 points in their last 4 meetings.
They had a tough time pulling away for good, but the Irish were able to ice this one from the free throw line of all places, where they have struggled much of this season. Notre Dame went an unbelievable 28 of 32 from the stripe, including all but one down the stretch and an insane 13 of 14 from Demetrius Jackson.
Speaking of the junior captain, Jackson had complete control of this one, filling up the stat sheet with 18 points, 9 rebounds, and 8 assists. Fellow captain Zach Auguste was also stellar, going off for 24 points on 10 of 13 from the floor and 9 rebounds of his own.
Freshman Matt Ryan, a new member of the Irish starting lineup, was the only other player in double-digits for Notre Dame with 10 while also grabbing 7 rebounds. Those three combined for 72% of the Irish scoring and 58% of the rebounds.
The Jackets were led, as they often are, by Marcus Georges-Hunt with 18 points, but on just 7 of 16 shooting. It was a similar story for Adam Smith, who had 15 points but needed 14 shots to get there. Nick Jacobs kept Georgia Tech in the game for a second half stretch, scoring on five straight Yellow Jacket possessions for his 10 points.
This was a pretty big victory for Notre Dame to get back on track. We'll have more coverage of this one tomorrow, with plenty to talk about, including a starting lineup change, a great game from the maligned Auguste, and an Irish team in general that we just can't seem to figure out where they stand.