Boston College men’s basketball appeared to be poised for a bounce back win in its road matchup against Minnesota following a blowout loss to Florida. Yet, the Golden Gophers rallied back from down 15 in the second half to secure an 85-80 overtime win Tuesday night.
Marcus Carr stepped up to lead Minnesota to victory in the clutch. He scored 22 points on the night, including nine of the team’s 15 points in overtime.
Minnesota nearly walked away with the win in regulation after Both Gach made a clutch jump shot with 10 seconds left to take the lead. Wasting no time, Makai Ashton-Langford came right back down the court and answered with a layup to tie the game at 70 with only five seconds remaining.
The game was close for the first half. The Eagles’ lead was one point going into halftime. They came out of the break on fire, starting with a 19-7 run. The run was sparked by a dunk by Felder and highlighted by some deep shots from Jay Heath. Heath would go on to finish the game with 16 points and five rebounds.
Following the Jay Heath three-point shot that extended the lead to 15, Minnesota head coach Richard Pitino called a timeout. His players came out of the break fired up and proceeded to score 16 unanswered points to take the lead. The rally was truly a team effort, with no one player scoring all the points to lead the comeback.
Wynston Tabbs appeared to be back to his pre-injury condition. His 24 points mark a new season-high, and his efficiency from the field, behind the arc, and the free-throw line indicates that he will likely improve upon that number as the season goes on.
Also showing improvement for the Eagles was CJ Felder. He finished the game with a career-high 11 rebounds and was only one point away from notching his first double-double.
Turnovers and foul trouble continued to plague the Eagles. They committed four more turnovers than Minnesota and eight more fouls. More importantly, the Golden Gophers attempted 23 more free throws than BC, sinking 23 of their 33 shots.
While BC’s interior defense struggled after off games from Steffon Mitchell and James Karnik, the Eagle’s perimeter defense played as well as they have all season. Minnesota was able to knock down less than a quarter of their 25 shots from behind the arc. On the other hand, they were able to make nearly 60% of their two-point field goals.
The loss against Minnesota puts the Eagles under .500 all-time against Big Ten opponents and marks their first loss to Minnesota. The only other time they have played Minnesota was two years ago, where they took the win at home.
BC’s next game will be at home against Syracuse on Saturday at 1:00 p.m. The Orange have looked strong so far this season, with their only loss coming on the road against No. 21 Rutgers. The Eagles will need a good showing if they want to build some momentum before they get into conference play at the end of the month.
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