Nov. 6, 2006
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – Notre Dame sophomore forward Luke Zeller (Washington, IN/Washington) paced a balanced scoring effort with 15 points as the Irish rolled past Bellarmine, 85-57, in exhibition basketball action from the Joyce Center Monday night. Senior guard Russell Carter (Paulsboro, NJ/Paulsboro) and sophomore point guard Kyle McAlarney (Staten Island, NY/Moore Catholic) rounded out the Irish in double figures with 14 and 11 respectively.
Zeller went 6-for-10 from the field, 1-for-1 from three-point territory and 2-of-4 from the free-throw line. He grabbed a team-high tying nine rebounds and also blocked two shots. Carter, who scored 10 of his 14 in the first half, was 5-for-11 from the floor, 2-for-4 from three and 2-of-4 from the charity stripe. He also chipped in with five rebounds, two assists and a steal.
McAlarney connected on 4-for-10 and 3-for-7 from behind the three-point arc. He dished out three assists and picked up a couple steals. Freshman Luke Harangody (Schererville, IN/Andrean) scored nine points, collected nine rebounds, added three steals and handed out two assists.
Freshman Tory Jackson (Saginaw, MI/Buena Vista) added nine points off the Notre Dame bench, while sophomore Zach Hillesland (Toledo, OH/St. John’s Jesuit) scored seven points, registered a team-high five assists, grabbed four rebounds, had two blocks and two steals.
The Irish shot just under 50 percent from the floor (27-for-55) and knocked down 10-for-18 (55.6%) from three-point land. Notre Dame limited the Knights to just 41.7 percent (20-for-48) from the field and forced 22 turnovers.
Dzaflo Larkai led all scorers with 19 points for Bellarmine.
The Knights jumped out to an early 3-2 lead on Brandon Clifford’s three-pointer at the 19:07 mark, but Notre Dame answered with eight unanswered points capped off by a three-point field goal from senior Colin Falls (Park Ridge, Ill./Loyola Academy) giving the Irish a 10-3 lead.
After Bellarmine drew within two points (12-10), the Irish exploded on a 14-0 run thanks in part to the perimeter shooting of Carter and McAlarney. Carter gave Notre Dame a 15-10 lead with a three-pointer and McAlarney followed with back-to-back treys from the left wing to push the Irish advantage to 16 points, 26-10.
Bellarmine never drew within 11 points the rest of the game. The Irish’s first half lead expanded to as many as 20 points (49-29) following Harangody’s lay-up 2:03 before intermission.
Notre Dame would take a 50-33 lead into the halftime locker room. The Irish did not shoot all that particularly well from inside the three-point arc (just 5-for-16) in the opening 20 minutes, but Notre Dame did connect on 8-for-11 three-point field goals and 16-of-22 from the charity stripe.
The Irish extended the lead to 22 points on two difference occasions in the second half. The Knights got no closer than 17 (73-56) with 3:51 left, but Notre Dame closed the game on a 12-1 run.
Notre Dame junior forward Rob Kurz (Lower Gwynedd, PA/Penn Charter) sustained a broken nose in practice on Sunday and was unavailable following surgery Monday morning. Kurz is expected to return to practice on Wednesday.
The Irish open their 2006-07 regular season on Friday night against IPFW. Tip-off with the Mastodons is scheduled for 8:00 p.m.
— ND —