March 18, 2017
By Robby Hamman
BUFFALO, New York - Notre Dame fell to West Virginia by a final score of 83-71 in the second round of the NCAA Tournament on Saturday afternoon in the KeyBank Center in Buffalo. The Irish finish the season with a record of 26-10.
The 2016-17 senior class of Steve Vasturia and V.J. Beachem end their careers with 97 wins, tied for the most of any class in Notre Dame history.
Junior forward Bonzie Colson carried the Irish offensively, scoring 27 points on 10-of-15 shooting. Vasturia also finished in double figures with 11 points on the afternoon.
How It Happened
The Mountaineers got off to a hot start, scoring the first 10 points in the game to put the Irish in an early hole. After West Virginia increased its lead to 15-4, the Irish responded with a 7-0 run to cut the deficit to 15-11 with under 12 minutes left in the half. The two sides settled in and played fairly even the rest of the way and the Mountaineers managed to take a seven-point lead into the half with the score 42-35.
The Irish cut West Virginia's lead to four points six minutes into the second stanza off a make from beyond the arc from Farrell. Unfortunately for the Irish the Mountaineers answered right back with two makes from distance to push the lead back to 10 points at 57-47 with 12:42 left on the clock.
Trailing 72-63 with under four minutes to play sophomore Matt Ryan knocked down a three to cut the lead to six points. West Virginia's Jevon Carter answered with a three of his own to push the lead back to nine. The Irish were unable to get any closer than six points the rest of the way as West Virginia won by a final score of 83-71.
Notre Dame Player Of The Game
Colson carried much of the load offensively for Notre Dame on Saturday, leading the team with 27 points on 10-of-15 shooting, including going 4-for-5 from beyond the arc. The junior also paced the Irish in rebounding, grabbing a team-best eight rebounds. Colson has now scored 20-plus points in 14 games this season.
Notre Dame Stat Of The Game
For the third time this season the Irish did not miss a single free-throw attempt in a game. Notre Dame finished a perfect 17-for-17 from the line. Notre Dame finishes the year with a percentage of .800 from the charity stripe, which is currently the best mark in the nation.
Notre Dame Notes
- Notre Dame now has an all-time NCAA tournament record of 40-39.
- The Irish are 28-13 against West Virginia in the all-time series.
- Vasturia moves into second place for most games played for a career in Notre Dame all-time history with 137 games.
- With a made three-point shot to score Notre Dame's first points of the game, Farrell extended his streak of consecutive games with a make from distance to 26 games. The streak is the second best streak of any ACC player this season.
- Colson now has 14 games with 20-plus points this season.
- Colson recorded his 34th performance with 10-plus points during his junior campaign after scoring 27 points.
- Vasturia posted a double-digit point total for the 27th time in 2017 with 11 points.
Robby Hamman joined Fighting Irish Media as athletics communications assistant director in September 2016, coordinating efforts for the volleyball and men's lacrosse program.