Penn State Nittany Lions at Notre Dame Fighting Irish
NCAAB: Purcell Pavilion, South Bend, Indiana at 12:00 PM ET, Saturday, March 17, 2018
The Penn State Nittany Lions head to Indiana to face the No. 1 seed, the Notre Dame Fighting Irish from the Purcell Pavilion at mid-day on Saturday. Penn State found just enough to beat Temple in the first round, while Notre Dame coasted past Hampton.
Penn State eke past Temple in NIT
The Penn State Nittany Lions scraped past the Temple Owls in the first round of the NIT, finding just enough offense in the final 10 minutes to win 63-57. They progress to the second round where the No. 1 seed Notre Dame is waiting.
Josh Reaves put up his second double-double of his career, going 7 of 10 from the field to finish with 19 points to go with his 10 rebounds. Tony Carr and Shep Garner finished with a combined 3 of 19 from the field.
As was the case against Temple, the Nittany Lions banked on their defense and reaped rewards. They have conceded an average of 66.6 points per game, which puts them 42nd in the country.
Notre Dame cruise against Hampton
The Notre Dame Fighting Irish were hardly even made to work in the opening round of the NIT. They demolished the Hampton Pirates 84-63. It was a cruise from the outset as Notre Dame began fast, and kept their momentum right through.
Martinas Geben was 7 of 9 from the field to finish with 18 points. TJ Gibbs chipped in with 17 points. Bonzie Colson added a double-double: 14 points to go with 12 rebounds.
The Fighting Irish have been middling on both ends this season, which in itself is one of the reasons they find themselves in this position. They concede an average of 68.5 points per game, which puts them 77th in the country.
Penn State Nittany Lions are:
- No key trends
Notre Dame Fighting Irish are:
- 4-0 ATS in their last 4 Saturday games.
- 11-5 ATS in their last 16 vs. Big Ten.
The Fighting Irish were hardly tested in the closing stages of the first round of the NIT. The Nittany Lions were. That should mean extra rest for Notre Dame’s key players and that should make a big difference when the game gets tight.