Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports
A loss to DePaul would have been devastating, but Notre Dame narrowly avoided it Wednesday.
On their first game after playing five overtimes Saturday against the Louisville Cardinals, the No. 21 Notre Dame Fighting Irish needed just one overtime to top the DePaul Blue Demons on Wednesday, 82-78.
Jerian Grant finished with 16 points and 10 rebounds for Notre Dame, which was 50 percent from the floor Wednesday at home. The Fighting Irish improved to 8-4 in the Big East, moving within a half-game of the three leaders at 8-3 (the Syracuse Orange, Georgetown Hoyas and Marquette Golden Eagles).
After an impressive win with the country's eyes fixed toward them Saturday night, a loss Wednesday to DePaul would have been embarrassing. DePaul is now 1-10 in conference play and has lost nine games in a row.
Notre Dame held a nine-point halftime lead but could not keep DePaul from catching up. Blue Demons forward Cleveland Melvin scored a game-high 23 points.
Notre Dame out-rebounded the Blue Demons 41-21.