No. 11 Notre Dame vs North Carolina live updates: scores, highlights from Saturday night

No. 11 Notre Dame (7-1) and North Carolina (4-4) squared off in a shootout at Notre Dame Stadium Saturday night, with the Irish prevailing, 44-34. 

The two team combined for 1,087 yards as Notre Dame for for the 20th time in 22 meeting between the two programs.

Kyren Williams provided the big spark for Notre Dame in with a 91-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter.

ND Insider beat writers @EHansenNDI, @TJamesNDI and @tnoieNDI covered the game and will have complete postgame coverage, along with South Bend Tribune photographers @TheRobFranklin and @MLCaterina.

Meanwhile, here's a transcript of how the game transpired:

► Instant Observations: Notre Dame cranks up the offense in life without Hamilton

Notre Dame’s Braden Lenzy (0) runs as Kyren Williams (23) blocks for him during the Notre Dame vs. North Carolina NCAA football game Saturday, Oct. 30, 2021 at Notre Dame Stadium in South Bend.

► Scoring summary: A quick breakdown of each scoring drive

11:03 p.m. — FINAL: Notre Dame 44, North Carolina 34

Notre Dame’s Avery Davis (3) leaps into the end zone during the Notre Dame vs. North Carolina NCAA football game Saturday, Oct. 30, 2021 at Notre Dame Stadium in South Bend.

10:55 p.m. — Score: Notre Dame 44, North Carolina 34

10:35 p.m. — SCORE: Notre Dame 41, North Carolina 34

► Notre Dame 31, North Carolina 27

Score: Green 33 pass from Howell (Atkins kick) at 2:48.

Drive: Six plays, 75 yards, 2:08 elapsed following Notre Dame kickoff.

Key plays: Howell found Chandler for 18 yards two plays after the Carolina drive was aided with a personal foul/shot to the head penalty by Irish linebacker J.D. Bertrand on Howell.

10:24 p.m. — SCORE: Notre Dame 41, North Carolina 27

► Notre Dame 41, North Carolina 27 

Score: Doerer field goal at 11:52

Drive: Five plays, 13 yards, 2:28 elapsed following D.J. Brown interception return. 

Key play: Davis ran for 10 yards on first down for first-and-goal from teh Carolina 5 before the drive stalled.

10:18 p.m. — Kyren Williams is OK. 91-yard TD Run. Notre Dame 38, North Carolina 27

Notre Dame’s Kyren Williams (23) runs the ball during the Notre Dame vs. North Carolina NCAA football game Saturday, Oct. 30, 2021 at Notre Dame Stadium in South Bend.

► Notre Dame 38, North Carolina 27

Score: Williams 91 run (Doerer kick) at 14:27

Drive:  One play, 91 yards, :17 seconds elapsed following North Carolina pooch punt. 

Key play: What else? Williams broke two tackles behind the line of scrimmage and Mayer added a key block in what NBC's Mike Tirico dubbed the "play of the year" for the Irish. 

End of the third

10:05 p.m. — SCORE: Notre Dame 31, North Carolina 27

► Notre Dame 31, North Carolina 27

Score: Green 33 pass from Howell (Atkins kick) at 2:48.

Drive: Six plays, 75 yards, 2:08 elapsed following Notre Dame kickoff.

Key plays: Howell found Chandler for 18 yards two plays after the Carolina drive was aided with a personal foul/shot to the head penalty by Irish linebacker J.D. Bertrand on Howell.

9:55 p.m. — SCORE: Notre Dame 31, North Carolina 20

► Notre Dame 31, North Carolina 20 

Score: Logan Diggs 1 run (Doerer kick) at 4:56.

Drive: Eleven plays, 81 yards, 5:24 elapsed following North Carolina punt. 

Key plays: Spelling an injured Williams, Diggs ran four times for 20 yards in the drive before scoring his first career touchdown. Coan and Styles also connected for 25 yards after an earlier Styles drop.

♦ First career touchdown for the freshman

9:50 p.m. — Kyren Williams goes to medical tent

♦ Williams back in the game on the next Notre Dame drive.

9:32 p.m. — Notre Dame 24, North Carolina 17

♦ Uhhhh. Yes, Jack Coan with a 21-yard touchdown .... uhh ... run for a Notre Dame touchdown. That's eight-straight scoring drives between the two teams.

► Notre Dame 24, North Carolina 20 

Score: Coan 21 run (Doerer kick) at 12:23

Drive: Three plays, 75 yards, ;58 elapsed following North Carolina kickoff.

Key plays: It was a trio of big plays on the drive, culminating in Coan's touchdown scamper. Williams opened with a 14-yard run before Coan and Styles connected for 40.  

9:27 p.m. — SCORE: North Carolina 20, Notre Dame 17

♦ Tar Heels out of the gate early with Ty Chandler's 53-yard TD run to give UNC the lead.

► North Carolina 20, Notre Dame 17

Score: Chandler 53 run (Atkins kick) at 13:21.

Drive: Five plays, 79 yards, 1:33 elapsed following second-half kickoff. 

Key plays: Howell found Downs twice on the drive for completions of seven and 13 yards.

9:24 p.m. — Second half is underway

♦ North Carolina starts at its own 21.

9:01 p.m. — SCORE: Notre Dame 17, North Carolina 13

Tar Heels get points before the end of the half and will receive in third quarter.

► Notre Dame 17, North Carolina 13 

Score: Atkins 26 field goal at :02

Drive: Seven plays, 51 yards, 1:13 elapsed following Notre Dame kickoff. 

Key plays: Working the final 57 seconds without a timeout, North Carolina gained nine, 13 and seven yards on three consecutive plays to get within field goal range. The sequence included a Howell to Downs pitch and catch for 13 yards. A 40-yard kickoff return by Ja'Qurious Conley set up the drive.

8:53 p.m. — SCORE: Notre Dame 17, North Carolina 10

► Notre Dame 17, North Carolina 10 

Score: Kevin Austin 21 pass from Coan (Doerer kick) at 1:23

Drive: Six plays, 75 yards, 1:59 elapsed following North Carolina kickoff.

Key plays: Coan connected with Mayer up the middle of the field for 30 yards on the second play of the drive, which later was kept alive after a 14-yard personal foul (facemask) call on Trey Morrison on fourth down.

8:40 p.m. — SCORE: Notre Dame 10, North Carolina 10

♦ Holding penalty takes Tar Heel touchdown off the board, but good drive ends with a game-tying field goal.

► Notre Dame 10, North Carolina 10

Score: Atkins 31 field goal at 3:22.

Drive: 13 plays, 62 yards, 6:34 elapsed time following Notre Dame kickoff. 

Key plays: Howell got real comfortable in the pocket, completing passes for 15, 19 and 31 yards to three different receivers — Antoine Green, Bryson Nesbit and Downs. 

8:29 p.m. — SCORE: Notre Dame 10, North Carolina 7

► Notre Dame 10, North Carolina 7 

Score: Doerer 31 field goal at 10:01Play and time 

Drive: 13 plays, 62 yards, 4:54 elapsed following North Carolina kickoff.

Key plays: The promising drive included four pass plays of at least eight yards as Jack Coan found Michael Mayer for eight, Lorenzo Styles Jr., for nine and Davis for 10 and 20 before the drive stalled.

8:18 p.m. — SCORE: Notre Dame 7, North Carolina 7

► Notre Dame 7, North Carolina 7 

Score: Ty Chandler 3 run (Grayson Atkins kick) at 14:55. 

Drive: Eight plays, 81 yards, 3:23 elapsed following Notre Dame kickoff.

Key plays: On third-and-eight from the Irish 47 and with one second left on the play clock, Sam Howell found Josh Downs for a juggling catch and a 41-yard gain to the Irish 6. Howell also found Justin Olson for 16 yards earlier in the drive.

8:15 p.m. End of 1st quarter: Notre Dame 7, North Carolina

♦ Tar Heels knocking on the door at the the Irish 6-yard line

8:13 p.m. — Meet DJ Brown, the guy starting for Kyle Hamilton tonight

► Safety DJ Brown is ready to tackle first career start on Saturday against North Carolina

Notre Dame’s DJ Brown (2) during the Notre Dame-USC NCAA college football game on Saturday, Oct. 23, 2021, at Notre Dame Stadium in South Bend.

8:06 p.m. — SCORE: Notre Dame 7, North Carolina 0

Notre Dame’s Avery Davis (3) skips into the end zone near North Carolina's Chris Collins (17) during the Notre Dame-North Carolina NCAA college football on Saturday, Oct. 30, 2021, in South Bend.

► Notre Dame 7, North Carolina 0

Score: Avery Davis 7 pass from Tyler Buchner (Jonathan Doerer kick) at 3:25.

Drive: Seven plays, 41 yards, 3:19 elapsed time following North Carolina punt.

Key plays: Kyren Williams returned the Carolina punt 52 yards to the Tar Heel 41 to start the drive. Buchner also ran for six yards on third-and-three before going for 14 yards two plays later.

8:01 p.m. — Buchner in. The ND QB rotation continues

► More:Podcast: Rick Mirer on quarterback Tyler Buchner's present and future at Notre Dame

Notre Dame’s Tyler Buchner (12) at quarterback during the Notre Dame-North Carolina NCAA college football on Saturday, Oct. 30, 2021, in South Bend.

7:56 p.m. — Bo Bauer helps North Carolina drive stall

7:46 p.m. — Irish opening drive stalls

7:41 p.m. — Chris Tyree returns for Irish

Sophomore running back Chris Tyree returned to action for No. 11 Notre Dame (6-1) on Saturday night against North Carolina (4-3) and returned the opening kickoff.

► More:Notre Dame running back Chris Tyree returns from turf toe injury

Notre Dame’s Chris Tyree (25) runs after making a catch during the Notre Dame vs. Purdue NCAA football game Saturday, Sept. 18, 2021 at Notre Dame Stadium in South Bend.

7:32 p.m. — Another big recruiting weekend at Notre Dame

A week after staging one of the biggest in-season football recruiting weekends in decades, Notre Dame encored with roughly 100 more visiting prospects Saturday night for its primetime matchup with North Carolina.

► More:Top 2023 D-line prospect Jason Moore among recruiting visitors at Notre Dame

Four-star running back Jadarian Price, a 2022 recruit, verbally committed to Notre Dame on Sunday.

7:28 p.m. EDT — Getting close

Notre Dame sees the light ... the inside story

SOUTH BEND — No one told the crowd inside Notre Dame Stadium to have their cell phone flashlights ready before Saturday night’s game against USC. 

As the crowd waited for the Notre Dame football team to emerge from the stadium tunnel, the lights illuminating the playing field went dark and the latest edition of the team’s intro runout video started playing on the video board above the south end of the stadium. 

With highlights from this season playing over a soundtrack provided by AC/DC, the stadium lighting started a flashing pattern to match the video. By the time Notre Dame’s team ran onto the field, thousands of fans in the stadium joined in the light show with their cell phone flashlights. 

► Tyler James has the full story here:How the Irish amplified the atmosphere in Notre Dame Stadium with lighting and music

The stadium lights go dark as fans create a light show using their mobile phones before the Notre Dame-USC NCAA college football game on Saturday, Oct. 23, 2021, at Notre Dame Stadium in South Bend.

Previewing today's game

Notre Dame’s Andrew Kristofic (73) during the Notre Dame-USC NCAA college football game on Saturday, Oct. 23, 2021, at Notre Dame Stadium in South Bend.

► Noie: Never before a guard, Notre Dame junior Andrew Kristofic sure is one now

Notre Dame’s Avery Davis (3) and quarterback Jack Coan (17) celebrate a touchdown with teammates during the Notre Dame-USC NCAA college football game on Saturday, Oct. 23, 2021, at Notre Dame Stadium in South Bend.

► What you need to know about No. 11 Notre Dame vs. North Carolina