In the first meeting between #18 Notre Dame and West Virginia the Fighting Irish didn't get going until late, when three three-pointers pushed them past the Mountaineers in Morgantown. Mike Brey's team got going offensively much sooner in the rematch, as a two-point lead at the half turned into a 71-44 whipping, moving their win streak to nine. This marks the first time in school history that the Irish have won nine straight Big East games, and by the game this young team has the look of a group that can make some noise next month.
This eight-day stretch for Colorado State has the potential to be a season-defining on as Tim Miles' team faces all three of the teams ahead of them in the Mountain West standings. Thanks to Pierce Hornung the Rams are off to a good start, as the senior accounted for 13 points, 15 rebounds and four steals in the 71-63 win at Moby Arena. About a month ago the Lobos embarrassed Colorado State at The Pit, doing whatever they pleased in an 85-52 laugher that was part of a 2-5 stretch for the Rams.
Both Baylor and Texas needed a win on Monday night albeit for different reasons. Scott Drew's Bears arrived in Austin two days after losing to Kansas State at home, and despite their status as a likely high seed losing three of their last four games wasn't the best way to bolster their resume. Texas on the other hand found themselves part of the race for one of those final at-large berths, arguably making the contest more important for them than it was Baylor.
We're going with a different setup for daily recaps in hopes of making the reading easier. One piece will focus on the game of the night (or day) and the top individual performances, and the other will touch on other key happenings and some quick hitters on other games.
With games at #13 San Diego State and against #11 UNLV this week, Steve Alford's New Mexico Lobos had a great opportunity to not only take control of the Mountain West but also make a statement nationally.
With hopes of not only remaining a factor in the ACC race but also notching their first win at #5 Duke since 1995, NC State was more than motivated for Thursday night's battle. And they played that way out of the gates, scoring the first eight points of the game and leading by as many as 19 points in the first half. But while the Wolfpack would continue to control play in the early portion of the second half, the foul trouble that developed for Mark Gottfried's team in the first half began to take its toll.
Wednesday night's game between New Mexico and San Diego State was a big one for the visitors, as Steve Alford's team didn't own a single win over a Top 25 team. But also on the line was sole possession of first place in the Mountain West after UNLV fell at TCU on Tuesday night.
With 1:22 remaining VCU and George Mason were tied at 51 in a hotly-contested, defensive-minded affair. There were no easy shots to be found in the matchup of two of the three teams that entered Tuesday's action tied for first in the CAA. That's where the real fun began, with the Rams and Patriots combining to score 21 points in that final 1:22 to cap an outstanding matchup. The difference wasn't so much what one team did wrong but rather what one did right. Sherrod Wright.
After a 15-2 run gave Louisville a 51-46 lead with 3:38 remaining it seemed as if the Cardinals were well on their way to an eighth straight win over #2 Syracuse. In a contest that featured some ugly offense, a five-point margin seemed to be near insurmountable despite the Orange's many talented players. However a Brandon Triche jumper just 18 seconds later would start a 6-0 run, which ended with a C.J. Fair bucket with 2:11 to go to give Syracuse the 52-51 win.