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The Journal Gazette


  • Associated Press
    Notre Dame's Brianna Turner (11) shoots over North Carolina State's Akela Maize during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in Raleigh, N.C., Thursday.
December 29, 2016 9:50 PM

NC State women hold on to upset No. 2 Notre Dame 70-62

AARON BEARD | Associated Press

RALEIGH, N.C. – Dominique Wilson scored 18 points to help North Carolina State upset No. 2 Notre Dame 70-62 on Thursday night, snapping the Fighting Irish's 35-game winning streak against Atlantic Coast Conference opponents.

Miah Spencer added 17 points for the Wolfpack (11-3), who never trailed and led by 19 in the third quarter in the conference opener for both teams. Notre Dame made a fourth-quarter run behind a flurry of 3-pointers from Marina Mabrey and got within five, but the Wolfpack went 6 for 6 at the line in the final 70 seconds to secure the program's first win against a top-5 opponent in nearly five years.

Mabrey finished with 22 points for Notre Dame (12-2), which came in with a 47-1 regular-season league record — the only loss coming at Miami in January 2015. The Irish's 35-game win streak against ACC opponents had included three straight ACC Tournament titles since joining the league.

BIG PICTURE

Notre Dame: It's unusual to see the Fighting Irish sputter offensively, but they struggled from the field for three quarters. They came in averaging 81.9 points and shooting 49 percent, but never got Brianna Turner going inside and finished at 42 percent — a total boosted by Notre Dame's late charge.

N.C. State: Put simply, this was a huge win for fourth-year coach Wes Moore, who went to the NCAA Tournament in his first year but had missed it the past two. The Wolfpack patiently worked the clock, knocked down big shots and played with discipline to build that big lead, then showed enough composure and toughness to turn away Notre Dame's frantic fourth-quarter comeback attempt.

UP NEXT

Notre Dame: The Fighting Irish visit Georgia Tech on Tuesday.

N.C. State: Things don't get much easier for the Wolfpack. N.C. State travels to No. 7 Florida State on Tuesday.