The Notre Dame Fighting Irish men’s basketball team dropped another heart-breaking game to an NCAA Tournament-caliber opponent tonight, falling to the #7 Florida State Seminoles 73 to 71 at Purcell Pavilion in the penultimate game of their regular season.
The Irish had an incredible start to the game driven almost entirely by Prentiss Hubb and John Mooney, who combined to score 35 of Notre Dame’s 42 first half points in an unreal display of efficiency (13-of-17 from the field, 6-of-8 from deep).
Hubb finished the game with 24 points, and Mooney completed the contest with 16 points and 11 rebounds in yet another of his nearly automatic double-doubles, but completely disappeared in a ROUGH second half where he did not score and had a couple bad turnovers down the stretch. Dane Goodwin also chipped in 16 points on the evening.
The Irish shot 46% from the field for the game, managing to make 34% (11-of-32) of their shots from deep. They were out-rebounded by the Seminoles by the slimmest of margins, 34 to 33, but turned the ball over 15 times in a very sloppy overall ball-handling performance as they let their big lead slip away in the second half.
Florida State, meanwhile, shot 44% overall and 28% from three-point range in a game that they led for literally 19 seconds of game play.
They were led by M.J. Walker, who finished with 21 points, 16 of which came in a fantastic 2nd half wherein he basically willed the Seminoles to the win on his own.
Trent Forrest (15 points, 7 rebounds, and the game-winning bucket with just 3 seconds remaining) and Devin Vassell (13 points, 4 rebounds) also helped lead the Seminole charge.
The Irish fall to 18-12 (9-10 ACC) on the season, and will play their final regular season contest on Saturday, hosting the Virginia Tech Hokies on Senior Day for John Mooney, T.J. Gibbs, and Rex Pflueger at Purcell. That game will tip-off at 2 PM ET.