Insane comeback keeps Notre Dame on NCAA bubble

Duke guard Trevon Duval goes up to dunk against Notre Dame guard Matt Farrell during the second half during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in the Atlantic Coast Conference men's tournament Thursday

The 5th ranked Duke Blue Devils (25-6) finished off their season in impressive fashion with a 74-64 victory over the North Carolina Tar Heels and come into the New York Life ACC Men's Tournament as the 2-seed after finishing conference play with a 13-5 record.

Colson banked in a go-ahead, 3-point heave that barely beat the shot clock with two minutes remaining, and Notre Dame rallied from 21 down in the second half to stun Virginia Tech 71-65 at the Atlantic Coast Conference Tournament.

Tech (21-11) still merits an at-large NCAA tournament bid, but Selection Sunday will be a mite more anxious than it should have been. "We knew it was going to come down to game situations, and we've been through a lot of those this year". We were okay offensively, not great. "We just completely fell apart".

That's not exactly how it went down.

With two minutes and two seconds left, Bonzie Colson hit a 3-pointer that gave Notre Dame its first lead since the 10:40 mark in the first half.

The Hokies missed nine consecutive shots and made only one of 16 in one stretch.

Matt Farrell (Notre Dame) scored a team-high 22 points for the winning team, making 5 of 13 attempts from the field for a 42.9% field goal percentage.

A back-and-forth start saw both teams control the ball extremely well.

But did the T turn the game irreversibly? The once 21-point deficit was cut down to four with only 3:39 left to play. The Hokies and Irish did. The Irish beat the Hokies 71-65 to advance to the Quarter Finals of the ACC Tournament.

Early action can, and often does, deceive.

Please Note: The Team/Players stats for Notre Dame are not updated with the results from their game against Virginia Tech on 3/7.

Duke forward Marvin Bagley III shoots against Notre Dame forward Bonzie Colson during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game in the Atlantic Coast Conference men's tournament Thursday

Farrell led the Irish with 22 points while Colson chipped in a modest - by his standards - 12.

He knew the defense was working. And one of their scores was a gift, an offensive rebound that fell into Austin Torres' lap for a routine layup.

Notre Dame simply could not get shots to fall early on shooting just 25% in the first half.

In the second-half, there was a monumental shift in momentum.

"It was tough to go through something like we did, but ... it's going to be a little different game with Matt and myself playing", Colson said. Even on offense he was occasionally motionless, hands on hips gasping for air. The broken left foot that cost him 15 games this season is no longer an issue.

After getting snubbed for ACC Coach of the Year honors, Notre Dame's Muffet McGraw was named the national coach of the year by USA Today on Wednesday. Chris Clarke supplied 12 points.

GREENSBORO, N.C. (AP) — Notre Dame still has a shot at being a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament after several knee injuries crippled the Fighting Irish this season.

The game really turned during a 13-0 run in the middle of the second half.

Bagley, Wendell Carter Jr., Grayson Allen and friends make Duke the most gifted team in the ACC, if not the country.

Irish head coach Mik Aoki has emphasized the need for some of the younger players for Notre Dame (6-4) to fully settle into the transition into college baseball. Notre Dame also earned 15 total wins against the RPI Top-50, which also leads the nation.

Head coach Mike Krzyzewski is not used to letting up in the ACC tournament, but if the Blue Devils can avoid a confrontation with the Cavaliers, they might be better off in the NCAA tournament.

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