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Cooley leads No. 22 Notre Dame past Kennesaw State

The Associated Press
Cooley leads No. 22 Notre Dame past Kennesaw State
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Notre Dame guard Pat Connaughton slides along the floor after being tripped during the second half of …

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) -- Jack Cooley had 14 points and 13 rebounds as No. 22 Notre Dame beat Kennesaw State 85-57 on Wednesday night.

Cooley has five double-doubles in seven games. Jerian Grant added 14 points for the Irish (11-1).

The Owls (1-9) closed out the final four minutes of the first half on a 9-4 run. The spurt was capped by Markeith Cummings' 3 as the first-half buzzer sounded, cutting the deficit to 34-28.

But Notre Dame (11-1) started the second half on a 19-5 run, and stretched its lead to 53-33. The run included six points from Grant, four from Sherman, four from Cooley and a 3 by freshman Cameron Biedschied.

Aaron Anderson led Kennesaw State with 16 points, followed by Cummings, who had 15.

The Irish began the game on a 16-9 run over the first 7:40, including two 3s by Pat Connaughton, one by Atkins, and one by Martin. Four of their first six baskets were 3s.

Notre Dame dominated the game inside, outrebounding the Owls 36-17 and outscoring them in the paint 44-28.

Connaughton and freshman Zach Auguste both scored 12 for Notre Dame. Atkins dished out 13 assists.

Freshman Zach Auguste scored a career-high 12 points in just 12 minutes. He entered the game with 8:39 to play and hit a short putback, was fouled on the play, and made the free throw. The next trip down the floor, Auguste scored with a two-handed slam off a feed from Atkins, stretching the Irish lead to 26-16.

Grant took a hard fall with 4:52 left to play, after a collision with Kennesaw State's Jordan Montgomery. Grant stole a pass near midcourt and drove hard to the basket as Montgomery fouled him. Both players crashed to the floor and were down for several minutes, before going straight to the locker rooms. Neither player returned to the game.

After the game, Notre Dame coach Mike Brey said Grant sustained a bruised hip. Brey added that he hoped Grant would be ready to play Friday against Niagara.

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