Dec. 21, 2005

Notre Dame Niagara Box Score

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) – Colin Falls scored 19 points and Kyle McAlarney added 16 as Notre Dame made a season-high 12 3-pointers and shot a season-high 55 percent to beat Niagara 80-59 Wednesday night.

Falls was 5-of-10 from 3-point range and McAlarney was 4-of-6 as the Irish (6-2) won their fourth straight, making 12-of-26 3-pointers. The Purple Eagles (2-6) shot just 31 percent in losing their sixth straight.

Niagara cut Notre Dame’s lead to 42-41 when James Mathis scored inside less than five minutes into the second half. But the Purple Eagles made just 2-of-17 shots over the next 10 minutes as the Irish took control with a 22-7 run.

Torin Francis and Rick Cornett had six points each during the run, with Cornett making Notre Dame’s first slam dunk of the season to give the Irish a 60-46 lead. The Irish extended the lead to 72-52 when Falls made a pair of free throws with 3:51 left.

Francis finished with 14 points and nine rebounds and Cornett had 10 points as the Irish outscored the Eagles 34-24 inside. The Irish also had a 40-35 rebounding advantage. Charron Fisher led Niagara with 19 points, James Mathis had 12 and Lorenzo Miles 10.

Both teams had runs in the first half, with Niagara leading by as much as six. The Irish, behind eight points by McAlarney, used a 16-1 spurt on 6-of-7 shooting to take a 31-21 lead, while Niagara went 0-for-9 with five turnovers. The Irish led 37-31 at halftime after Russell Carter stole the ball from Clif Brown under the Notre Dame basket and made a 14-foot jumper at the buzzer.