Leaving the New England cold behind them, Boston College travelled to the Sunshine Slam in Daytona Beach this weekend where they faced the Utah Utes in their first game of the tournament.
Even with the Florida sun the Eagles got off to a slow start, falling behind early. But the Eagles kept the game close and with 7:52 left in the half Quinten Post hit a three-ball to finish off an 8-0 run and give BC a 2-point lead. The Eagles went into the locker with that slim 2-point lead of 32-30. In the first half BC shot 48.1% from the floor and 57.1% from beyond the arc. However, the Eagles struggled at the free-throw line, only going 2-for-5.
The second half saw a lot of back and forth action with the lead changing multiple times. With 11:27 to go, Utah stretched their lead to 46-41. The Eagles battled back and with 7 minutes to go BC was able to draw to within one thanks to a 2 for 2 free-throw-line trip from DeMarr Langford Jr.
From there the Eagles kept the game within reach, but they couldn’t seem stop the Utes. There was a 1:11 minute stretch where neither team scored until James Karnik hit a pair of free throws to cut the Utah lead to 2 points. Late in the game, the Eagles had their chances to tie things up but they couldn't catch up. The Eagles drew a shot clock violation with 3:03 left in the half but couldn’t convert on the opportunity and the Utes then extended their lead to 4.
James Karnik missed a mid range jumper that would have tied the game with 1:23 left in the game. The killer followed quickly after that when Utah’s Marco Anthony threw down a dunk with 0:54 left, which BC followed up with a missed three pointer from Jaeden Zackery. BC then had to start fouling. The Eagles couldn’t cut the lead any closer from there and ended up losing by a score of 68-61.
This was certainly a frustrating loss for the Eagles as they played well enough to keep the game close but not well enough to reclaim the lead. Jaeden Zackery finished the game as BC’s scoring leader with 15 points. BC’s 14 turnovers really hurt them down the stretch in the game. They did shoot 42.3% from the floor and 50% from beyond the 3-point arc, and out rebounded Utah 32 to 28. This Eagles team has some promise but they still have a long way to go.