Pittsburgh overcomes early Irish advantage

By By DAN WEISS / Niles Daily Star
NOTRE DAME, Ind. -- Despite a six-point halftime lead, the Notre Dame men's basketball team could not pull off an upset of No. 4 Pittsburgh in Big East Conference play Saturday night at the Joyce Center.
Chris Thomas got the Irish (10-9, 4-5) off to a great start, making his first three 3-pointers. Notre Dame never trailed in the first half.
The second half, however, was all Pittsburgh (22-1, 8-1) as the Panthers outscored Notre Dame 40-26 after halftime.
The Irish made a late rally to pull within three points down the stretch, but Pittsburgh held them off and pulled away with free throws at the end of the game.
Thomas, who has been struggling with his shot lately, came out on fire and finished with a game-high 23 points. He shot 9-of-17 from the floor and 5-of-10 from 3-point range.
Notre Dame sophomore guard Chris Quinn, who scored 25 points in a loss to Boston College on Wednesday, managed just three points against the Panthers.
Senior Torrian Jones helped out with 12 points for the Irish. Sophomore center Torin Francis played just nine minutes as he left the game early with back spasms.
Krauser paced Pittsburgh with 19 points and Julius Page added 17. Jaron Brown helped out with 11 points.
Notre Dame hosts No. 5 Connecticut tonight at 7 p.m.
Pittsburgh……66
Notre Dame….58
Pittsburgh: Chevon Troutman 3 3-6 9, Jaron Brown 4 2-2 11, Julius Page 7 1-2 17, Carl Krauser 5 6-8 19, Chris Taft 3 0-0 6, Yuri Demetris 0 0-1 0, Mark McCarroll 1 0-0 2, Antonio Graves 0 0-0 0, Toree Morris 1 0-0 2. Totals: 24 12-19 66
Notre Dame: Jordan Cornette 2 0-1 5, Torin Francis 2 0-0 4, Chris Thomas 9 0-0 23, Chris Quinn 0 3-4 3, Torrian Jones 5 1-4 12, Rick Cornett 0 0-0 0, Colin Falls 1 0-0 3, Tom Timmermans 2 4-4 8. Totals: 21 8-13 58
Halftime score: Notre Dame 32, Pittsburgh 26
3-point shooting: Pittsburgh 6 (Krauser 3, Page 2, Brown), Notre Dame 8 (Thomas 5, Cornette, Jones, Falls). Team fouls (fouled out); Pittsburgh 15 (none), Notre Dame 18 (Cornette, Timmermans). Team records: Pittsburgh 22-1 (8-1 Big East), Notre Dame 10-9 (4-5)

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