Nov. 19, 2004
By TOM COYNE
AP Sports Writer
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) – Chris Quinn scored 20 points and Chris Thomas added 17 as No. 20 Notre Dame beat Harvard 66-59 on Friday night despite blowing an 18-point lead.
The Crimson, who won just four games last year, went ahead 59-57 when Kevin Rogus hit a 3-pointer with 6:06 left. But Harvard didn’t score again.
The Fighting Irish (1-0) made just one more shot from the field, a 15-foot jumper by Thomas with 2:13 left, but went 7-for-10 from the free-throw line, including Quinn going 4-for-4.
Brian Cusworth led Harvard with 15 points and 13 rebounds; Matt Stehle had 13 points and 10 rebounds and Rogus added 10 points.
Notre Dame appeared on the verge of a blowout when Torin Francis scored 18 seconds into the second half to put the Irish up 45-27. But Stehle scored six points to spark a 12-0 and the Crimson pulled within six points.
The Irish went up by nine, but several minutes later Cusworth had a three-point play and David Giovacchini drove inside for a basket to cut the lead to 55-52. Rogus then made a 15-foot jumper to cut the lead to 55-54. After Jordan Cornette made a pair of free throws for the Irish, Rogus made his 3-pointer to give Harvard its only lead of the game.
The Irish shot 45 percent in the first half, but just 21 percent in the second. After outscoring Harvard 11-0 on fastbreak points in the first half, the Irish were outscored 6-0 in the second half.
Harvard shot 46 percent in the game despite five air balls, and outrebounded Notre Dame 41-35 – 25-16 in the second half.