Boston College Pops Syracuse’s Bubble
Boston College defeated Syracuse 85-70 in Chestnut Hill, MA Wednesday night.
The Eagles jumped out to a 34-22 lead with 6:09 left in the opening stanza, but the Orange used an 11-0 run to pull within one, 34-33, at the 1:36 mark. The teams traded baskets and entered halftime with Boston College clinging to a 40-37 lead.
Jordan Chatman drained a three-pointer on the opening possession of the final twenty minutes. Tyus Battle made a free throw on the ensuing possession to cut the Eagles’ lead to five, but Syracuse would not get any closer the rest of the way. A Jerome Robinson free throw with 6:13 to go gave Boston College a 73-57 advantage.
The Eagles shot 48.1% from the field, including a blistering 14-of-27 from three. The Orange were successful on just 38% of their shots from the field, including 10-of-24 from deep, but turned the ball over 15 times.
Boston College was led by Ky Bowman’s 23 points, on 7-of-12 from the field and 5-of-8 from distance, 4 rebounds, 5 assists, and 4 steals. Robinson scored 22 points and dished out 7 assists. Chatman contributed with 18 points, including five made three-pointers, and 4 rebounds.
Syracuse was led by Battle who tallied 29 points on 7-of-18 shooting, including 5-of-10 from beyond the arc. Oshae Brissett added 18 points and 9 rebounds. Frank Howard finished with 17 points, 4 rebounds, and 5 assists.
Paschal Chukwu grabbed 9 rebounds in the losing effort.
Jim Boeheim commented on his team’s performance in his postgame press conference. “Second half, the biggest disappointment we gave up three fast-break layups and we gave up two offensive rebound baskets and we can’t give those up,” Boeheim said. “They [Boston College] are a very good team. They obviously shoot the ball well and they made a lot of good plays and a lot of good shots tonight.”
With the loss, the Orange fell to 18-12 overall, 7-10 in the ACC, while the Eagles improved to 17-13 on the season, 7-10 in conference play. Syracuse clinched their first losing season in the ACC since joining the league in the 2013-14 season, which includes three puzzling road losses to Wake Forest, Georgia Tech, and Boston College, and zero wins over ranked teams.
The Orange will look to break that trend when they host #18 Clemson in the regular season finale on Saturday at 2pm. Syracuse, which has now lost four of their last five games, are in desperate need of a win to keep their NCAA Tournament hopes alive and gain momentum leading into next week’s ACC Tournament. The Tigers are 22-7 overall, 11-6 in the ACC, and are coming off a 76-63 win over Florida State on Wednesday. Clemson is led by Marcquise Reed who is averaging 15.9 points, 4.8 rebounds, and 3.5 assists per game. Last year, the Orange defeated Clemson, 82-81, on a three-pointer by Battle at the buzzer. Senior Patrick Herlihy and Braedon Bayer will be honored prior to the game in a special Senior Day ceremony.