Georgia Tech basketball continued its undefeated 2018 calendar year on Wednesday night, downing the 13-4 Notre Dame Fighting Irish by a final score of 60-53 at McCamish Pavilion. The Jackets improve to 9-7 overall and 2-1 in ACC play as the team continues to piece things together after a tumultuous start during the out-of-conference schedule.
It was a tightly-contested game for the majority of the time, with Tech maintaining a slight edge before building a 12-point lead towards the end of the first half following an impressive 11-0 run. The Jackets would see that lead dwindle down to just one point before Notre Dame took the lead very briefly with 11:26 remaining in the second half on a Martinas Geben layup. Strong end-of-game performances from Josh Okogie and Tadric Jackson eventually sealed the deal for Tech.
The MVP for the Jackets was unquestionably Notre Dame guard Rex “Squirrel Boy” Pflueger, whose 0-8 performance earned him a round of applause from the near-capacity McCamish Pavilion crowd. Outside of him, it was the Josh Okogie show -- the standout sophomore finished with 17 points, 5 assists, 4 rebounds and 2 giant blocked shots on the night. Ben Lammers contributed 10 points and 10 rebounds while Tadric Jackson chipped in 11 points and 9 rebounds off the bench.
Though the absence of two All-American caliber players in Bonzie Colson and Matt Farrell was Notre Dame’s undoing, stand-in Lithuanian center Martinas Geben proved near-unstoppable for Tech’s frontcourt to the tune of 16 points and 9 rebounds. John Mooney and T.J. Gibbs also contributed for the Irish, putting in 11 points each in the loss.
Next up for Tech will be a weekend game at Pittsburgh before the team returns to Atlanta for a critical game versus No. 3 Virginia at McCamish Pavilion.