Jan 6, 2002
By TOM COYNE
AP Sports Writer
SOUTH BEND, Ind. – Derrick Snowden and Ricky Wright scored 17 points each and Villanova survived squandering a 14-point second-half lead to beat Notre Dame 74-72 Sunday.
The Irish (10-3, 0-1 Big East) trailed 63-49 with 8:17 left when Reggie Bryant hit a free throw for Villanova (9-2, 2-0). But Notre Dame switched to a full-court press and the Wildcats began turning the ball over. The Irish used a 23-8 run to take a 72-71 lead when David Graves made a pair of free throws.
Snowden, who had the ball stolen from him four times on five Villanova possessions, scored on a layup with 26 seconds left as Villanova regained the lead, 73-72.
Chris Thomas tried to drive past Snowden with 3 seconds left, but put up an awkward bank shot that Bryant pulled down for Villanova. Bryant was fouled, and made one free throw to give the Wildcats a 74-72 lead. A half-court shot by Ryan Humphrey as the clock ran out fell well short.
The victory was the eighth straight for the Wildcats over Notre Dame – the only Big East team the Irish have yet to beat in league play.
Gary Buchanan and Bryant scored 13 points each for Villanova, which shot 56 percent for the game to help overcome 23 turnovers. David Graves led the Irish with 22 points, Ryan Humphrey had 18 points and 10 rebounds, and Thomas added 18 points on 5-of-18 shooting for the Irish, who shot only 38.6 percent for the game.