January 2, 1997
Fighting Irish Move to 1-1 In Big East Behind Garrity's 25 Points
NOTRE DAME, Ind. - Notre Dame took control of the game from the opening tip and never trailed as the Fighting Irish beat visiting Syracuse 69-52 in a Big East Conference game Thursday at the Joyce Center.
Pat Garrity led all scorers with 25 points - 16 in the first half - and finished with 11 rebounds.
The Fighting Irish (7-3, 1-1) opened the game with a 22-8 run and, by the end of the first half, held a comfortable 37-21 lead. Syracuse (8-5, 0-3) mounted a run with under 10 minutes left to play in the second half and cut the Notre Dame lead to 11 points and 50-39 with 8:34 left.
Notre Dame, however, quickly built the lead up again and took its biggest lead with 4:55 left, going up 22 points.
"(The win)'s huge," Garrity said. "Last year we didn't get our first conference win until midway through the season. To start off like this, against a good team like Syracuse, is a great win."
Joining Garrity in double figures in scoring was guard Admore White who finished with 14 points and 10 assists.
"I thought I had to step up tonight," White said. "I knew they were going to leave me open at the top of the key against the zone. Coach (John MacLeod) told me he had confidence in me and to keep shooting the ball and fortunately a couple shots went down."
Syracuse was led by Otis Hill who scored 17 points.
The Notre Dame defense stifled Syracuse as the Orangemen finished the game shooting 28 percent from the floor.
MacLeod was pleased with both the Irish's play on offense and defense.
"I thought defensively, we did a good job," he said. Of course, Syracuse did not have Todd Burgan, and without him, they are a different tea, It was a situation where it was a defensive battle the whole way.
"From the offensive standpoint, we moved the ball well. they have a good zone; it is very effective. We were shotting 3s and came out of it early and intermittently we were able to go back to it. Overall, from an offensive standpoints, it was a good game."