Jan. 10, 2009
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) – Luke Harangody didn’t let his worst shooting game this season slow him.
Harangody missed 10 straight shots while going nearly 23 minutes without a basket, yet still scored 10 points during a decisive run late to lead No. 13 Notre Dame to an 88-79 victory over Seton Hall on Saturday.
Harangody finished with 30 points, on 8-for-23 shooting, and 16 rebounds and The Irish (12-3, 3-1 Big East) tied a Big East record with their 20th consecutive league win at home and have won 45 straight overall at home. The Pirates (9-7, 0-4) have lost four straight this season and six straight to the Irish.
Notre Dame coach Mike Brey praised Harangody for not letting his shooting struggles slow down his overall game as it did at times last year.
“He kind of laughs about it now instead of getting uptight,” Brey said.
Harangody, who missed a lot of shots inside he normally makes with ease, said it was frustrating.
“Coach said during the game to just keep going at it, and I did,” he said. “I finally started going to work a little bit in there. Not one of my best days, but it still felt good,” he said.
Harangody ended his field goal drought with a rebound basket with 9:55 left to tie the score and spark the 13-4 run the put the game out of reach.
“We kept Harangody down about as best as we could, but he’s a remarkable player,” Seton Hall coach Bobby Gonzalez said. “He gets his hands on everything and I thought he was the difference in the second half. He gets 30 and 16 even when it seems like he’s not having a good game.”
It was the 10th double-double this season for Harangody, the Big East’s leading scorer at 24.5 points a game. He shot 35 percent from the field, just the third time this season he shot below 50 percent.
The league’s second-leading scorer struggled as well. Jeremy Hazell, who didn’t start for the first time this season, tied his season low with 12 points on 3-of-12 shooting. Gonzalez said Hazell didn’t start because he was sending him a message: “There’s certain things I want done a certain way.”
Eugene Harvey led the Pirates with 21 points, Robert Mitchell added 15 points and Jordan Theodore had 11.
Tory Jackson and Kyle McAlarney had 18 points each for the Irish. There were 14 ties and 14 lead changes.
Notre Dame outrebounded Seton Hall 25-15 in the second half and were 28-of-32 from the free throw line for the game while the Pirates were 10-of-15.
The normally easy going Brey showed agitation at the fact he’s seen some analysts listing Harangody, last year’s Big East player of the year, as a second-tier candidate for the national award.
“How is that possible? He is a top tier national player of the year candidate,” he said. “These other guys that are picking these other guys two or three, I want to see their coaching records, their playing stats or I want to see them in workout gear. The last one could be quite funny. C’mon. The guy is a national player of the year candidate.”