On Wednesday night, Boston College men's basketball held off Columbia to improve to 7-2 on the season—their best start since the 2010-11 season. The Nation’s Most Dynamic Guard, Ky Bowman, lead the way in the Eagles’ 82-73 victory, tallying a game-high 24 points on 8-12 shooting from the floor. Bowman also recorded his second double-double of the season, adding 10 rebounds and 5 assists through his 40 minutes of play.
The Eagles lead for the vast majority of the first half, jumping out to a 12-point lead with 3:15 left in the half. Early on, the Eagles received an offensive spark from a pair of freshmen who made their first career starts in Jairus Hamilton and Chris Herren Jr. Hamilton scored eight points, flying to the rim at multiple points in the first half. Herren Jr. scored his five points in a quick bunch within the first five minutes, but struggled from the field in the latter portions of the game.
At the half, BC lead the Lions 38-32 after Columbia finished on a 7-1 run. Columbia’s Patrick Tape dropped in six first half points and eventually scored a team-high 17 points on 8-13 shooting from the field. Apart from Tape, two other Lions reached double figures. Forward Randy Brumant and guard Quinton Adlesh each ended with 16 points, carrying most of the offensive burden in the second half along with Tape.
After the break, the Eagles’ lethal pair of guards caught fire. Wynston Tabbs scored 16 of his 19 total points in the second and Bowman added 15 of his own to keep BC in front of Columbia for the majority of the half.
However, the Nik Popovic factor may have won the game for the Eagles. Popovic’s size simply outmatched the Lions, causing the Eagles to dominate the glass. The junior big man finished with a double-double, notching career highs in both points and rebounds with 22 and 14, respectively.
Overall, the Eagles out-rebounded Columbia 44-32, creating 19 second chance points. Steffon Mitchell’s hustle was also on display all game long, as the sophomore forward snatched nine rebounds.
While Columbia continued to fight until the end, even dragging BC’s lead down to just four points with a minute and a half to go, the Eagles finished the game on a 8-3 run to record their seventh win of the season. On the other hand, Columbia now sits at 3-7.
BC will look for their second straight win against Fairfield this Sunday at 1 p.m. in Conte Forum. While the Stags of Fairfield have struggled to this point, dropping their last three games en route to a 2-8 record, their two guards at the top could pose a challenge for the Eagles.
Freshman Neftali Alvarez and junior Landon Taliaferro are both averaging 14.3 points per game this season, leading the way for the Stags. BC should have an advantage from both a size and athleticism standpoint, but the ability to stay consistent across the floor will once again be tested on Sunday afternoon.