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Caldwell-Pope leads Georgia past Notre Dame

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Kentavious Caldwell-Pope scored a career-high 16 points, including the go-ahead 3-pointer late in the game, helping Georgia to a 61-57 victory over Notre Dame on Tuesday night in the third-place game of the CBE Classic.

Fellow freshman Nemanja Djurisic added 10 points for the Bulldogs (4-1), who rebounded nicely from a rout at the hands of No. 20 California to escape Kansas City with some positive vibes.

The young Bulldogs built a seven-point lead early in the second half, but the Irish (4-2) tied it at 53 with 5:11 to play on two free throws by Jerian Grant.

Caldwell-Pope broke the tie with his fourth 3-pointer of the game with 3:37 left, and added a free throw moments later to give the Bulldogs a four-point cushion. Georgia prevented Notre Dame from making another field goal until Grant's 3-pointer at the buzzer.

Grant finished with a career-best 20 points, and Eric Atkins added 12, though they couldn't make up for the poor shooting night by star forward Tim Abromaitis.

He finished 1-for-12 from the field, 0-for-8 from beyond the 3-point arc and managed just six points in his second game since serving a four-game suspension. He had a chance to get the Fighting Irish within one in the final minutes but was blocked by Donte Williams, summing up his night.

Neither team managed much separation during a tightly contested first half, though Notre Dame went on an 11-2 run that turned a 15-11 deficit into a 22-17 lead.

But the Bulldogs answered behind the outside shooting of Djurisic, a 6-foot-8 freshman forward who has proven valuable off the bench. His first 3-pointer pulled the Bulldogs within 26-25 with 4:15 left before the break, and his second tied the game at 28 with 2:28 remaining in the half.

Eric Atkins broke the deadlock with a free throw, but Sherrard Brantley drained a 3-pointer for his only points of the first half just before the buzzer to give Georgia a 31-29 lead in the locker room.

Georgia tied a season high by making seven 3-pointers in the first half, while the Irish went just 2 of 10 from beyond the arc.

Abromaitis was 0 for 4 from long range and 0 for 6 from the field in the first half, totaling just two points and four rebounds.

The fifth-year senior returned from a four-game suspension caused by a misunderstanding of an NCAA bylaw by his coaches to score 22 points in an 87-58 loss to Missouri in the semifinals.

That was the program's worst loss since a 31-point setback to Connecticut in January 1999.

Notre Dame looked like it might be able to rebound from the humbling defeat when it scored eight straight points in the second half to pull even with the Bulldogs. But the poor shooting of Abromaitis and the Fighting Irish's inability to keep Georgia off the glass prevented them from pulling ahead.