It was an interesting non-conference season for Boston College. There were the good wins over Auburn and Providence, and the bad losing to the likes of Nicholls State, Hartford, and Fairfield. The question became which team would show up to begin league play.
The answer was the team that shoots 57% from the field, has four players in double figures and never allows the opponent to have the lead. It all added up to a terrific start to finish performance, a 96-81 over Syracuse.
BC’s offense was a big part of the story on Sunday afternoon, scoring 90 points for the first time since November of 2013 VS Toledo. The defense was solid as well holding the Orangemen to under 40% shooting for the game. The Eagles were the better team and they showed it from start to finish.
The first half was about the BC guards, who shot lights out. Ky Bowman had 30 on the day for his second 30-point effort of the year and Jerome Robinson, who accounted for 22 for the game, were a combined 10 for 17 in the half. They accounted for 15 of the first 22 points and 25 of the first 37 points. As Coach Jim Boeheim would say after the game, his defense was not very good and his guards did not find shooters defensively.
When the Eagles were not scoring from the outside they were getting it done on the blocks. Freshman Nik Popovic came off the bench and gave BC some inside production, 10 points on 5-6 shooting all from around the basket, as the Eagles did a great job of interior passing from within the 2-3 zone. Boston College, which at one point led by 15, 44-29, settled for an 11-point lead at the break 44-33.
In the second half, the Eagles kept pouring it on. At one point the lead grew to 21 on a Jordan Chatman three, 67-46 with 13:38 to play. Syracuse never got the margin below 15. Boston College did what it could not do all of the last conference season, win a game. Final score 96-81 Eagles.
After the game, Boston College head coach Jim Christian talked about the good decisions his team made with the ball getting 28 assists on 36 made baskets. They were also 16-26 from deep and many of those were wide open shots. Still, his was unhappy about his team’s second-half defense which he said was “poor”, but on this day it did not matter.
Boston College got 16 from A.J. Turner and 11 from Nik Popovic. Syracuse got a double-double from Tyler Lyndon 17 points and 12 rebounds, and Tyler Robinson with 11 and 10. Andrew White contributed 22 and Taurean Thompson had 14.
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