West Virginia Topples No. 8 Notre Dame
Joe Mazzulla added 16 points, and Kevin Jones had 14 points and 10 rebounds for the Mountaineers (17-9, 8-6 Big East), who got a badly needed win against a ranked opponent to prop up their NCAA tournament hopes.
Ben Hansbrough led Notre Dame (21-5, 10-4) with 19 points before fouling out. Carleton Scott added 11 points and Tyrone Nash scored 10.
West Virginia scored 46 points after halftime after shooting just 29 percent (8 of 28) before the break. The Mountaineers committed a season-low five turnovers.
The Irish were trying to match their best conference record through 14 conference games, set in 2000-01, but shot just 35 percent (21 of 60) for the game.
West Virginia had been struggling since its high mark of the season, a 68-64 win over No. 11 Purdue on Jan. 16 that pushed its record to 12-4. They had lost five of nine entering Saturday.
Bryant single-handedly turned things around. He had shot 24 percent from the floor and averaged six points over his last five games, but went 5 of 11 against Notre Dame - and 10 of 12 from the foul line - as the Mountaineers outscored the Irish 20-8 on free throws.
West Virginia has a tough task to finish the regular season with games at No. 4 Pittsburgh and Rutgers, then home contests against No. 13 Connecticut and No. 16 Louisville.
Notre Dame led 27-26 at halftime but went through a couple scoring droughts early in the second half. Hansbough was held without a field goal for the first 12 minutes of the second half. By then, West Virginia had taken command.
Bryant made two 3-pointers during a 17-4 run that was capped by Jonnie West's 3-pointer for a 45-35 lead with 13:59 remaining. After Tim Abromaitis hit a 3-pointer for Notre Dame and Tyrone Nash made a layup, West Virginia got going again.
Bryant scored six points during a 12-4 run that gave the Mountaineers a 57-42 lead with 9:35 remaining. Notre Dame got no closer than 10 points the rest of the game.
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