Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports
Joe Rahon with the dagger!
After Boston College scored just three points in the game's first 7 minutes and 20 seconds, you figured the Eagles were in for another long afternoon. So credit the team for climbing back in this one, going on runs of 10-0 and 15-2 to build a five point lead with 3:37 to go in the first half. However, Virginia would respond with an 8-0 run of their own to take a 25-24 lead into the locker room.
BC started the game shooting just 1-6 from the floor before heating up. The Eagles finished the half shooting 7-for-13, including 4-10 from three. Joe Rahon hit a pair of threes in the first half, one off a nice Dennis Clifford rebound and dish on a Hanlan missed three. BC shot the ball relatively well from the floor despite Virginia extending the D to defend the perimeter for most of the night.
While the two teams committed only a combined 11 turnovers in the first half (Virginia 6, Boston College 5), the Cavaliers and Eagles turned in one of the most boring halves of basketball imaginable. The game was 7-3 Virginia at the first official media timeout (13:08), both sides missed more than a few wide open looks and the #QuestFor50 was on.
The Eagles managed a quick start to the second half, where back-to-back buckets from Olivier Hanlan and Joe Rahon put BC up 28-27. But the offense would stall out after that, going nearly seven minutes without a bucket. Virginia would go on a 10-0 run over that stretch, including being the recipient of one of the most ridiculous Flagrant 1 fouls I've ever seen.
With the ball on offense, Anderson was doubled at the elbow. Trying to protect the basketball, the skin cells of his elbow may ... may have grazed the Virginia defender's face. RA was charged with the Flagrant 1 for throwing the elbow. While I understand the rule, I question where RA even made contact with the Virginia defender. Donahue seemed pretty upset with the call, but it wasn't enough to break his personal technical foul-less streak of ~134 consecutive bad calls without Donahue getting T'd up. UVa's Justin Anderson would make one of two free throws.
After a Taylor Barnette three pointer extended the Virginia lead to 43-32 with a little over 10 to play, the Eagles came roaring back scoring the next seven points to cut the lead to four. After a criminally bad charge call on Hanlan, Virginia scored on two of its next three possessions to extend the lead to eight. But Boston College would once again respond. A Patrick Heckmann deep ball cut the Virginia lead to just three with a little over three minutes in the game.
Virginia's Akil Mitchell and BC's Eddie Odio would exchange thunderous dunks on consecutive possessions to keep the deficit at three with 1:38 to play. On the following possession, a Eddie Odio block -- EDDIE ODIO SMASH! -- led to a Olivier Hanlan layup as he broke out ahead of the Virginia defense. With under a minute to go, UVa's Jontel Evans missed the jumper but the Eagles couldn't grab the rebound and the ball hit the floor. In the ensuing scrum for possession, Virginia got the timeout call before a jump ball could be called. A really quick whistle and another questionable call.
A Boston College foul put Joe Harris on the line. Harris hit 1 of 2. With 20.7 seconds left and BC with the ball, Joe Rahon hit an NBA range three pointer and got fouled to give the Eagles a 53-52 lead with 8.7 seconds to play.
After Rahon missed the free throw, Jontel Evans dribbled the ball the length of the court but wound up turning the ball over as he dribbled over the baseline. BC ball with 0.4 seconds to play.
BC tossed the ball in on the inbounds as the clock ran out. Akil Mitchell actually corralled the inbounds pass and hit a halfcourt three pointer shot but not before the game clock expired.
The Eagles finished the game on a 12-3 run and credit where its due, overcame deficit after deficit to take the home game against the Cavaliers. With the victory, the Eagles improve to 13-16 overall and 5-11 in ACC play, currently in a three-way tie with Clemson and Wake Forest for the ACC Tournament's no. 9 seed. If the season ended today, BC would finish as the 9 seed, owning the tiebreaker over the Tigers and Demon Deacons by virtue of a 2-1 record against the tied teams (Clemson is 1-1, Wake Forest 1-2).
Tonight's player of the game, Joe Rahon, finished with a team high 15 points on 3-of-5 shooting from beyond the arc. Ryan Anderson, who was relatively quiet on the night, added eight points and nine boards. Hanlan added 13, Heckmann 9 and Odio 8. No other Eagles found the scoring sheet, including Lonnie Jackson, who finished 0-for-3 from three coming off the bench.
BC has a short turnaround as they travel to Littlejohn Coliseum to take on the Clemson Tigers on Tuesday night at 7 PM.
Congratulations to Boston College Athletics SID Dick Kelley, who was honored before the game as the male recipient of this year's U.S. Basketball Writers Association's Most Courageous Award. Tremendous honor for one of the finest ambassadors of Boston College athletics and the basketball program.
Leave your thoughts on the win below. Go Eagles!