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Eagles Suffer Close Loss to No. 24 Wake Forest

Boston College football fell to 3-2 overall and 1-1 in the ACC after a 27-24 home loss to No. 24 Wake Forest on Saturday afternoon. The Eagles have dropped three of the last five meetings between the two teams.

The Demon Deacons took a commanding 10-0 lead in the first quarter, scoring a touchdown with 8:47 left in the quarter, then adding on a field goal with a little under three minutes to go.

BC responded in the second quarter, however, tacking on a field goal and finding the end zone in a five-minute span. Aaron Boumerhi gave the Eagles their first score of the game with a 22-yard field goal with 12:56 to play in the half.

About five minutes later, Anthony Brown connected with Zay Flowers for a touchdown on a 26-yard pass, tying the game at 10-10. BC was methodical on the drive, moving 85 yards in a mere six plays. 

After throwing his first interception of the season less than two minutes into the game, Brown composed himself to have a decent stat line on the day. The junior went 20-for-28 with 240 yards, two touchdowns, and two interceptions. Brown hadn’t thrown an interception in his last 102 pass attempts entering the game, with his last coming in 2018 against Syracuse.

“It was just a snap and clear mentality,” said Brown in a post-game conference. “As they always preach to me, understanding that we have the rest of the game to play. Next play mentality, and just kept going.”

With 3:14 to go in the quarter, Wake Forest scored another touchdown after driving 82 yards on nine plays. 

This lead would not last long, as the Eagles battled back to tie the game up 17-17 with 41 seconds left in the half. Travis Levy ignited the drive with a career-long 45-yard kickoff return. After a 15-yard pass to Ben Glines and a 20-yard pass to Kobay White, Brown connected with David Bailey on a 4-yard shovel pass for the score.

BC forced a three-and-out for Wake on its opening drive of the second half but was unable to capitalize on the momentum, as Brown threw his second interception of the game on the Eagles’ ensuing drive.

The Demon Deacons added another field goal with 4:47 to go in the third quarter, taking a 20-17 lead. 

AJ Dillon brought the Eagles down the field at the beginning of the fourth quarter, tallying 56 yards over two rushing plays and one reception. Unfortunately, a 44-yard field goal from BC that would have tied the game was called back after a delay of game penalty. After moving back five yards, a mishandled snap led to an incomplete pass from holder Dennis Grosel.

“I felt that at that point I still thought we would get it off,” said head coach Steve Addazio. “I knew it was close. I did not want to burn that timeout. I thought we would get the ball off. That's all I can tell you. I'm a half a second wrong. That's life. That's where it is.”

For the third consecutive game, Dillon had over 150 rushing yards, ending the day with 159 yards and an average of 6.9 yards per carry. The last BC player to do this was Dillon himself as a freshman back in 2017. 

With 9:47 to play, the Demon Deacons added another touchdown to make the game 27-17. 

The kickoff after the score set the Eagles up at their own 35-yard line. After driving 65 yards, Brown handed the ball off to David Bailey, who then found Chris Garrison in the back of the end zone to tighten the score at 27-24 with 6:39 to play.

Wake Forest was able to let the clock run out to about 28 seconds, putting pressure on the Eagles to get down the field from their own five-yard line as fast as possible. BC was unable to make it down the field, ending the game at 27-24.

Although the Eagles had their highest yardage total of the season with 536 yards, they struggled on third-down, converting just two of twelve opportunities on the day. 

As for the defense, John Lamont and Max Richardson led the team in tackles, notching 17 and 13, respectively. BC outplayed Wake Forest on defense but was ultimately unable to stop the Demon Deacons enough for a win.

“You know what's important right now? We have to move forward,” said Addazio. “That's what's important right now. We have to get ready to play Louisville. That's what's important right now.”

BC will look to rebound as they take on Louisville in Kentucky on October 5 at 12:30 p.m.

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