Huskies lose to Notre Dame, 73-70


One week after losing their first game of the season to Pitt, the Huskies lost again on the road, this time to Notre Dame by a final score of 73-70.  The Huskies had two separate chances to tie the game with a 3-pointer, but could not convert.

 

My take on the game:

 

Most of this season, Kemba Walker has led the way for the Huskies.  Tonight, Walker scored 19 points, but had a terrible night of shooting, hitting only 8 of 23 from the field, including 0-5 from beyond the arc.  The rest of the team shot 18-36 overall, and 7-13 from beyond the arc.  Quite simply, it seemed like Walker tried to do too much in this game, continuing to shoot on an off-night, when the rest of his teammates seemed to finally step up and provide support.

Walker, after an incredible start to the season, is starting to cool off.  Worse, he’s starting to force shots.

Alex Oriakhi, who was outstanding in Maui, has pretty much disappeared.  He needs to average close to a double-double for this team to be successful, and he’s not getting it done.  Last night he was held scoreless.

The Huskies finally had some support last night – Napier had a very good shooting night, scoring 18, including 3-4 treys.  Jamal Coombs-McDaniel may have played his career game, scoring 9 points in only 17 minutes.  He may finally be getting untracked.  Roscoe Smith had a decent night with 11 points, but only 4 rebounds.

This was a very winnable game – good team on the road, but still a winnable game.  The Huskies lately have seemed to revert back to last season’s form – particularly trying 3’s at inopportune moments, and shooting themselves completely out of games.  What’s kept them in games this season is that they’re doing a better job at the free throw line, and have cut back on turnovers.

The Huskies are about to hit a very difficult stretch of games.  They’re at Texas later this week, which I have as a loss, then should beat Rutgers and DePaul.  After that, they get Villanova, Tennessee, @Marquette, Louisville and Syracuse.  Unless they turn things around quickly, the Huskies may lose all 5 of those games.

 

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