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COLLEGE BASKETBALL ROUNDUP: Another OT thriller for Notre Dame, DePaul

Jamee CrockettJerian Grant

Jamee Crockett,Jerian Grant

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Updated: March 15, 2013 1:38PM

In the midst of a nine-game losing streak, DePaul coach Oliver Purnell is looking for bright spots.

He saw two in an 82-78 overtime loss to No. 21 Notre Dame (20-5, 8-4 Big East). First, the visiting Blue Demons (10-14, 1-10) played well in the second half and had a chance to beat the Fighting Irish. Second, his team played a lot better in overtime than they did 11 days earlier, when Notre Dame scored the first seven points of overtime to win. This time the Irish used an 8-3 spurt late in the overtime to put the game away.

“I’m not happy with it,” Purnell said. “I’m encouraged our guys continue fight and continue to get ready.”

Brandon Young, who scored 20 for DePaul, said the Blue Demons shouldn’t have let the game get to overtime.

“We should have gotten a big-time rebound, but we just have to gang rebound,” he said.

Notre Dame, still recovering from its marathon five-overtime victory four days earlier against Louisville, had just enough to edge DePaul in overtime for the second time in 11 days. The Irish looked to be cruising to victory when DePaul used an 11-1 run to take the lead. The Blue Demons built a three-point edge, but couldn’t hold on.

“That’s really as big a win as Saturday, when you turn around and dig one out when it doesn’t look good at times,” Notre Dame coach Mike Brey said.

Jerian Grant scored 21, including a big three-point play in overtime, to lift the Irish.

”It is tough,” said Cleveland Melvin, who led DePaul with 23 points. “We were fighting the entire second half, but it is tough to get over the hump in overtime.”

No. 1 Indiana 76,
Nebraska 47

Cody Zeller scored 16 points and Christian Watford finished with 13 points and 11 rebounds to help the host Hoosiers (22-3, 10-2 Big Ten) pull away from the Cornhuskers (12-13, 3-9). Indiana has won seven of eight and regained a share of the league lead with Michigan State.

UConn 66,
No. 6 Syracuse 58

Freshman Omar Calhoun scored 15, including three three-pointers in the deciding second-half run, as the host Huskies (17-6, 7-4 Big East) upset the Orange (20-4, 8-3).

Illinois State 79,
Bradley 59

Jackie Carmichael had 27 points and 13 rebounds as the streaking Redbirds (16-10, 7-7 Missouri Valley) avenged a loss to the visiting Braves (14-12, 6-8). Tyler Brown added 22 points, eight rebounds and five assists for Illinois State, which has won seven of its last eight.

SIU 65, Evansville 56

Jeff Early scored 14 points and grabbed 10 rebounds as the host Salukis (10-15, 3-11 Missouri Valley) bounced the Purple Aces (14-12, 7-7). Southern Illinois’ bench outscored Evansville’s reserves 26-9.

Ball State 56, NIU 52

Jauwan Scaife (23 points) sank four free throws in the final 35 seconds as the visiting Cardinals (10-13, 4-7 Mid-American) held off the Huskies (5-18, 3-8). Antone Christian scored 14 and Darrell Bowie 11 for Northern Illinois, which shot 35 percent.

Noel’s season over

Freshman forward Nerlens Noel of Kentucky was declared out for the season with a torn ACL in his left knee.

Sun-Times wires

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