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Beachem, No. 19 Notre Dame blast Boston College

Beachem, No. 19 Notre Dame blast Boston College
Published On: Wed, Mar 01
Dec 7, 2013; South Bend, IN, USA; Notre Dame Fighting Irish head coach Mike Brey stands with his players as they sing the Notre Dame Alma Mater after Notre Dame defeated the Delaware Blue Hens 80-75 at the Purcell Pavilion. Mandatory Credit: Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- Senior V.J. Beachem went out in style for No. 19 Notre Dame.

Playing in his final home game on Senior Night, Beachem scored 22 points to lead the Irish to an 82-66 victory over Boston College.

Ky Bowman led the Eagles with 19, while A.J. Turner added 13.

Winners of six straight, Notre Dame moved to 23-7, 12-5 and second place in the Atlantic Coast Conference. Losers of 13 straight, Boston College is 9-21, 2-15.

"To get a win with my brothers on my last time on this court was great," Beachem said. "Just a great effort."

Notre Dame's Bonzie Colson finished with 18 points and 11 rebounds for his league-leading 18th double-double.

Beachem and fellow senior Steve Vasturia have helped the Irish win 79 games -- a school record -- over the past three seasons. Vasturia added 10 points, five rebounds and three assists in 35 minutes. The two left to a standing ovation with 1:34 remaining.

The program's other senior, walk-on Patrick Mazza, nearly brought the building down with a two-handed dunk in the closing minutes. It was the first career points for the former defensive end on the football team.

"That sure is a Senior Night to remember," Irish coach Mike Brey said. "We couldn't have scripted it any better. Your two (main) seniors have fun, you can take them out of the game to a standing ovation."

The Irish trailed by seven in the first half, then tossed together a big run of 15 unanswered. Beachem and freshman guard T.J. Gibbs were catalysts in the bust-out. Gibbs was all over the defensive end with his long arms and quick hands. Gibbs got more time after Matt Farrell picked up two fouls the first 16 minutes.

Gibbs finished with four points, four assists, three rebounds and two steals in 21 minutes.

Doing what a senior should do on his final home game send-off, Beachem scored 15 of the first 34 for the Irish.

Notre Dame also held Boston College without a basket for 6:01 late in the first half. The Irish finished the first half on a 17-2 run to go up 36-28 at the break.

As has been the case most of the season, the Eagles just couldn't overcome a stretch of poor play. It happened the first time the teams met, when Boston College led by 13 in the first half before losing by eight. It happened again Wednesday.

"I thought we took some questionable shots, especially when we had the lead," Eagles coach Jim Christian said. "We didn't stick to doing what we were doing to get the lead."

Meanwhile, the Irish moved the ball and finished with 17 assists. They played small. They played big. They found Beachem when he was hot and allowed Colson to excel.

As a result, a close contest got away. Again.

"They did what they do," Christian said of Notre Dame. "They really played hard and well together. It's really fun to watch because every guy on their team shares the ball. When they get hot, they're tough to match up with."

NOTES: Notre Dame closes the regular season Saturday at No. 8 Louisville. Boston College plays at Clemson on Saturday. The Eagles are already locked into the No. 15 seed for next week's ACC tournament; the Irish can earn a share of the regular-season title with a win Saturday coupled with a Duke victory over North Carolina. .... Eagles G Jerome Robinson entered Wednesday with a league-best 17 games of scoring at least 20 points, but he was limited to nine against the Irish. ... Notre Dame entered play Wednesday the national leader in free throw percentage (.815), then made just nine of 14 at the line (64.3 percent). ... Irish PG Matt Farrell verbally committed to Boston College early in his senior year of high school before he signed with Notre Dame following the firing of former Eagles coach Steve Donahue. ... Irish guards T.J. Gibbs and Rex Pflueger earned spots Wednesday on the league's all-academic team.

Read the complete news article here...

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