NEW YORK -- Eric Atkins delivered a big shot at a big time yet again
for Notre Dame.
Quiet from a scoring standpoint much of the evening, the sophomore
guard delivered a critical 3-pointer at a clutch time to help No. 3
seed Notre Dame survive No. 6 South Florida, 57-53, in overtime in a
Big East Championship quarterfinal at Madison Square Garden.
With the shot clock draining away and the Irish up one, Atkins hit a 3
from the top of the key to give the Irish a four-point lead with 29.4
seconds remaining. A South Florida 3 cut the advantage to one with 2.5
seconds remaining before Atkins was sent to the free throw line with
1.6 seconds to play. He made the first, then missed the second. Atkins
tapped the miss out of bounds with 0.4 seconds remaining.
Officials put one second on the clock. South Florida then turned it
over on the inbound pass.
Pat Connaughton and Jerian Grant led the Irish with 12 points each.
Scott Martin had 10.
Notre Dame (22-10) advances to the Big East Championship semifinals
for the fifth time in school history. The Irish have never played for
a league championship during their 17-year affiliation with the