BC knocks off No. 25 Miami 72-70 in a thriller

BC knocks off No. 25 Miami


The month of February is considered moving month in college basketball, and a good month can put you in the conversation for the NCAA tournament.  A bad month can take you out of it. Saturday afternoon at Conte Forum, the Boston College Eagles keep themselves in with a 72-70 win over No. 25 Miami.


The Eagles won this game in the last five minutes, outscoring the Hurricanes 9-0. They did it with the duo of Jerome Robinson, 29 points on 10 of 15 shooting from the field, including 8-for-9 at the free throw line, and Ky Bowman with 24 points on 7-for-11 from the field and 6 of 7 from the line. These two were the only double-figure scorers for BC on the afternoon and without them, Boston College had no shot at the upset.


The first half was about shooting from long distance and both teams were getting good looks and knocking down those shots. Miami would hit four in a row to take an early 14-11 lead. DJ. Vasiljevic hit three of those four three-pointers and he finished the game with 17 points shooting 50% from deep 5-of-10.


Despite the hot shooting from the Hurricanes, BC hung in there with them. They took their fourth lead of the first half on a Robinson three, 19-16 with 12:45 to go in the half. The back and forth nature of this game can be explained by 11 lead changes and 11 ties. Neither team could create separation in the first twenty minutes.

Miami took a one-point halftime lead on a free throw by Anthony Lawrence II and the Hurricanes went to the locker room up 44-43. They got a big-time contribution from their bench outscoring the Eagles by a 17-0 count while shooting 57% (16-28) from the field. If BC was going to win this one, their defense was going to have to get better. And it did.


The second half started with BC on a 5-2 run to take a one-point lead at 48-47. Steffon Mitchell with a three-point play, got things going for the home team. Miami came right back with a 6-0 spurt to take the lead back, up five at 53-48 with 16:15 left in the game. A Robinson layup tied the game for the twelfth time at 55-55 with 13:23 to go.


The Hurricanes would take their biggest lead of the afternoon at seven, 70-63 with 6:17 left. A 6-0 burst led by Chris Lykes with a layup and two foul shots. He finished with 16 for the game. With a little over six minutes, it was not looking good for the home team.


But in the last five minutes, BC’s stars took over. A Bowman foul shot was followed by two straight Robinson baskets and it was 70-68 Miami with three to play. Robinson would hit two free throws to tie the game for the thirteen time at 70-70 with 1:39 left. Miami had a chance to take the lead back but Lonnie Walker IV three was missed. BC grabbed the rebound and called timeout with 25 seconds left.


The last play was designed for Robinson to take with six seconds left, according to his coach Jim Christian. Robinson did take the shot but he missed it, however, Bowman swooped in to get a big offensive rebound and got fouled. He stepped to the line and made both shots to give the Eagles the lead 72-70 with three seconds left.


After a Miami timeout, a half-court shot by Lawrence was off, and the Eagles walked away with a big win. It was their second win over a ranked team this year and improved their record to 15-10, 5-7 in the conference.


Miami was without their head coach Jim Larranaga who was feeling ill and stayed in the locker room for the entire game. They got 11 points from Ja’Quan Newton. The Hurricanes fall to 18-6 and 7-5 in ACC play.


The Eagles will try to do something they have not done all season, win on the road in league play. They get that chance on Tuesday night when they travel to Pittsburgh to take on the Panthers.

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