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Saturday, February 4, 2012
Rapid Reax: Notre Dame 76, Marquette 59

By Matt Fortuna


SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- Here's a quick look at Notre Dame's 76-59 win over No. 15 Marquette:

How it happened: Notre Dame broke a tight game wide open in the second half behind an 18-2 stretch that featured 14 unanswered points. The Irish hit 8 of 13 3-point attempts in the final 20 minutes, leading to Marquette timeout after Marquette timeout. The Irish, seemingly left for dead after Tim Abromaitis tore an ACL in November, have now won four straight games to improve to 7-3 in the Big East, a half-game out of second place behind Marquette and Georgetown, which are both 8-3. The Golden Eagles had their seven-game winning streak snapped in ugly fashion.

Stat of the game: This game was won behind the arc, where Notre Dame shot 11 of 23 and Marquette made just 2 of 13 attempts. Notre Dame hit three straight 3-point attempts during one point late in the second half, effectively closing the door on Marquette.

Star of the game: Freshman Pat Connaughton was hot all afternoon, finishing with a game-high 23 points off 9 of 12 shooting. Connaughton hit 5 of 8 3-point attempts and caused trouble for Marquette the entire game.

What’s next: Marquette has a quick Midwest turnaround Monday at DePaul, where the Golden Eagles will try to get back on track. Notre Dame looks to continue its winning ways Wednesday at West Virginia, where the Irish's four-game winning streak will be put to the test.