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ACC Tournament 2019: First-round recap

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And a look ahead at what’s on tap for Wednesday.

NCAA Basketball: ACC Conference Tournament-Boston College vs Pittsburgh
Pitt guard Trey McGowens scores two of his game-high 26 points in Tuesday’s win over Boston College
Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

The 2019 ACC Tournament kicked off on Tuesday with three games featuring the six lowest-seeded teams in the conference. The top four seeds, Virginia, North Carolina, Duke and Florida State do not play until the quarterfinals on Thursday. The No. 5 seed, Virginia Tech, along with Syracuse, Louisville, N.C. State and Clemson begin play on Wednesday.

Here is a wrap of Tuesday’s action:


Game 1: No. 12 Miami 79, No. 13 Wake Forest 71

The Hurricanes defeated the Demon Deacons 79-71 in the first game. Miami was led by Dejan Vasiljevic, who scored 21 points and Anthony Lawrence II, who scored 20 points and pulled down 10 rebounds. With the win, the ‘Canes face No. 5 Virginia Tech on Tuesday afternoon.

Wake Forest ends another disappointing season with 20 losses for the third straight year. While the Deacs have some young talent on the roster, you have to wonder how long Danny Manning will be around.


Game 2: No. 15 Notre Dame 78, No. 10 Georgia Tech 71

If there is one lower seed in this tournament that can make a little noise it is Notre Dame. Look, this isn’t Mike Brey’s best team. It’s a transition year in South Bend after Brey has lost some serious talent over the last three years. However, this team is young, feisty and just hangs around games. While I don’t see them making a deep run in this tournament, I do think they can win one more game.

On Tuesday, the Fighting Irish ended a seven-game losing streak with a first-round win over Georgia Tech. John Mooney hit a clutch shot with around one minute remaining to put the Fighting Irish up by two possessions and that was enough for Notre Dame to hang on for the win. Mooney, a double-double machine, finished with 20 points and 10 rebounds

Moses Wright led the Yellow Jackets with 25 points. Another losing season ends for Josh Pastner and the Yellow Jackets. It’s been a long time since this program was good.


Game 3: No. 14 Pitt 80, No. 11 Boston College 70

Pitt broke out those sweet retro uniforms in its first-round win over Boston College. Head coach Jeff Capel has his hands full with this program but he’s done a good job in year one. If we know anything about Capel, it is that he can recruit with the best of them.

On Tuesday, the two of the young Panthers, guards Trey McGowens and Xavier Johnson combined for 49 points The two freshmen attacked the rim with ease all night and the Boston College defense had no answer. If the two guards stick around Pittsburgh for awhile, they have tremendous long-term potential.

Junior forward Nik Popovic led the Eagles with 21 points and nine rebounds and Jordan Chatman chipped in 16 points. All-ACC guard Ky Bowman scored 14 points as he struggled from the field.

The Eagles finish the season with a 14-17 record. Pitt advances to play former Big East rival, Syracuse, on Wednesday evening.


Wednesday’s lineup

Game 4: No. 8 N.C. State vs. No. 9 Clemson — Noon ET, ESPN

Game 5: No. 5 Virginia Tech vs. No. 12 Miami — 2 p.m. ET, ESPN

Game 6: No. 7 Louisville vs. No. 15 Notre Dame — 7 p.m. ET, ESPN2

Game 7: No. 6 Syracuse vs. No. 11 Pitt — 9 p.m.. ET, ESPN2