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Big East Day Two: Evening session

(7) West Virginia 72 (10) Notre Dame 64: West Virginia crushed any chance Notre Dame had at a bid for the NCAA men’s tournament in a 72-64 win over the Fighting Irish.

The first half  seemed like a repeat of the St. John’s-Marquette game from earlier in the day.  With 7:12 remaining in the first half, Notre Dame was down 26-6.  The Irish lost the game at the glass, with the Mountaineers out-rebounding Notre Dame 44-27. West Virginia also held the Big East leading scorer  Luke Harangody to four points in the first half. Harangody, who was sporting a black eye for the occasion, played a more aggressive and physical game in the second half. He finished the game with 27 points and was  aided by a visibly emotional Kyle McAlarney, who had 17 points and went 4-9 from beyond the arc.

The  Mountaineers were led by Alex Ruoff with 25 points and Devin Ebanks, who came down with 18 rebounds in the win against Notre Dame. West Virginia shot 55 percent from beyond the arc and used a fast-paced man-to-man defense in order to thwart the Notre Dame offense.  West Virginia will play Pitt in the quarterfinals tomorrow at 7 p.m.

(6) Syracuse 89 (11) Seton Hall 74: A close matchup was blown open after the Seton Hall Pirates were rattled by a second-half on-court fight with players from the Syracuse Orange.

Syracuse’s Arinze Onuaku blocked a shot of John Garcia’s and celebrated by yelling at Garcia, who retaliated with a swat at Onuaku. Both players were given technical fouls, but the tension followed the teams to the other half of the court. On the next possession, Seton Hall’s Brandon Walters was called for an intentional foul when used excessive contact on Christian Ongenaet. Players from both teams got into each others faces and the referees intervened. After the skirmish, Seton Hall’s Eugene Harvey and Syracuse’s  Eric Devendorf were given technical fouls.

Seton Hall managed to hang with the Orange, ending the first half down by five. Jeremy Hazell kept the Pirates in the game with his 3-point shot.  The Orange found its shooting power from starters Devendorf, Jonny Flynn and Onuaku. Flynn had 19 points and 11 assists in the fiery matchup.

Syracuse’s win solidified its spot in the quarterfinals of the Big East Tournament. Only the teams ranked Nos. 1-8  received a place in the quarterfinals, strengthening an argument against the new format of the tournament that includes all 16 teams.

-Amanda Doyle

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