The Notre Dame Fighting Irish hosted the Maine Black Bears on Thursday night and came away with a 87-78 victory, continuing their success at home this season. It's playing on the road that's troubled Notre Dame this season, as the Fighting Irish are now 6-0 at home this season but 0-4 on the road.
It wasn't a dominant victory for the Fighting Irish, but they played well on offense tonight and made enough stops in the second half to keep the Black Bears away. Notre Dame led 44-41 at halftime, but just couldn't establish a solid lead for most of the second half. Maine's last lead, 64-63, came with 8:02 remaining, although they closed the lead to just 73-72 with five minutes left. Notre Dame pulled away from there, though, going on a 10-0 run that would effectively close out the game.
The Irish were led by guard Eric Atkins, who scored 26 points on 9-for-15 shooting. He was 5 of 7 from three-point range and added six assists, as well. Forward Jack Cooley was big off the bench as well with 22 points, 14 rebounds and four blocks in a dominant performance. Maine had three players score nearly all of their points. With Gerald McLemore putting up 27, Justin Edwards scoring 20 and Alasdair Fraser adding 17, they accounted for 64 of Maine's 78 points.