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The Notre Dame defense came up big in the fourth quarter once again as the Fighting Irish rallied to defeat Boston College 20-16 on Saturday. (Daily Star Photo/KELLY SWEENEY)
The Notre Dame defense came up big in the fourth quarter once again as the Fighting Irish rallied to defeat Boston College 20-16 on Saturday. (Daily Star Photo/KELLY SWEENEY)

Archived Story

Notre Dame rallies to knock off Boston College, 20-16

Published 9:27am Monday, October 26, 2009

By TOM NYHUIS
Niles Daily Star

NOTRE DAME, Ind. – Notre Dame’s Jimmy Clausen hit Golden Tate with a 36-yard touchdown pass in the fourth quarter to lift the Irish past visiting Boston College 20-16 Saturday afternoon. The Irish win breaks a six game losing streak to the Eagles.

The Eagles had one last chance to take the win in the final minutes, but the drive came to a halt when quarterback Dave Shinskie threw his third interception of the gamek, and the team’s fifth turnover of the afternoon.

Boston College also fumbled twice.

Shinskie and the Eagles took over at the Boston College 32 with 3:22 to play in the game moving the ball to the Irish 27 with 1:48 to play. Brian Smith’s interception at the 22 and a 10-yard return sealed the victory as the Irish to improve to  5-2.

Clausen’s second touchdown pass to Tate was the Irish’s longest completion of the day, with Clausen finishing the day 26-of-39 and two touchdowns through the air for 246 yards hitting seven different receivers. Tate pulled in a season high 11 catches for 128 yards and two touchdowns. The Irish netted just 106 rushing yards in the game with Armando Allen carrying the ball 21 times for 98 yards to lead the Irish ground attack.
The Irish took an early 3-0 lead on a 37-yard Nick Tausch field goal after Notre Dame’s opening drive stalled at the Boston College 19.

After a 15-yard sack of Clausen in the end zone, Clausen was called for intentional grounding and the Eagles Jim Ramella picked up the sack and the safety for Boston College two points.

Tausch’s second field goal of the day, a 34-yard kick in the second quarter gave the Irish a 6-2 lead. The Eagles got their first touchdown on a 7-yard pass from Shinskie to Rich Gunnell with 4:40 to play in the first half taking a 9-6 lead. Clausen hit Tate for their first touchdown hook up of the game on a 11-yard pass with 36 seconds remaining and the Irish held a 13-9 lead at the halftime intermission.

Montel Harris put the Eagles back up on top 16-13 finishing off a six play 56-yard drive with a 2-yard tote in the Eagles opening drive of the second half.

Shinskie completed 17-of-35 with two interceptions for 279 yards. Gunnell pulled in 10 catches for 179 yards. The Eagles ground game netted just 70 yards on the day. Last week Boston College ran for over 300 yards against NC State and Notre Dame coach Charlie Weis knew what his team had to do Saturday.

“One thing we were going to have to do was stop the run,” Weis said. “And our rush defense I thought was excellent today and its been along time since our defense has been excellent. We obviously have work to do but I think we are starting to get some of the stuff figured out and I think our best football is still ahead of us.”

Boston College 2 7 7 0  – 16
Notre Dame 3 10 0 7  – 20

ND- Nick Tausch 37 yd field goal
BC- Jim Ramella safety
ND- Tausch 34 yd field goal
BC- Rich Gunnell 7 yd pass from Dave Shinskie (Steve Aponavicius kick)
ND- Golden Tate 11 yd pass for Jimmy Clausen (Tausch kick)
BC- Montel Harris 2 yd run (Aponavicius kick)
ND- Tate 36 yd pass from Clausen (Tausch kick)

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