Notre Dame adds to Villanova’s woes
Irish finish 20 of 32 from long range to finish unbeaten at home
SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- Tim Abromaitis made a career-high nine 3-pointers and scored 30 points and Ben Hansbrough had 30 points and 10 assists in his final home game Monday night as No. 8 Notre Dame routed No. 19 Villanova 93-72 to secure a double bye in the Big East tournament.
Notre Dame (24-5, 13-4) hit a school-record 20 3-pointers and finished unbeaten in 17 games at the Purcell Pavilion, the only team in the league to be spotless on its home court this season.
Hansbrough made seven 3-pointers as the Irish were wide open from the perimeter all game and finished 20 for 32. Notre Dame, shooting 37.7 percent from 3-point range this season, was 11 for 19 in the first half, including 4 of 6 from Hansbrough, to build a 47-27 lead. The Irish led by as many as 25 points, sending a spirited home crowd into a frenzy as they made one open 3-pointer after another.
Among those cheering Hansbrough were his family, including brother Tyler, the former North Carolina All-America now with the Indiana Pacers. Notre Dame football coach Brian Kelly was in a front-row seat.
Leading scorer Corey Fisher, coming off a two-point game in a loss to St. John's, led Villanova (21-9, 9-8) with 22 points, 17 in the second half .
Plagued again by cold shooting, Villanova lost for the fifth time in seven games in its late-season slump. The Wildcats missed their first seven 3-point attempts and were 2 for 10 from long range in the first half.
The Irish wasted little time in taking control as Carleton Scott started the scoring with a 3-pointer, Abromaitis made two from long range and Hansbrough added another in an opening 14-4 run less than 4 minutes into the game.
The demonstrative Hansbrough finished the opening half with 16 points, pumping his fist at made baskets by his teammates and even smiling after feeding Abromaitis in the corner for another 3.
Notre Dame's previous record for 3-pointers was 19 against South Dakota on Dec. 2, 2008.