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MEN'S BASKETBALL: Anderson Has Career Day Against FIU In Season Opener

Heights Staff

Published: Monday, November 12, 2012

Updated: Wednesday, January 9, 2013 19:01

Sophomore Ryan Anderson had the best game of his Boston College basketball career on Sunday, recording 29 points and 17 rebounds. But it was his efforts that didn’t show up on the stat sheet that may have been his biggest improvement from last season.

“I’ve been trying to take more of a leadership role on this team, verbally,” Anderson said. “Being more [vocal] out there on the court is helping me be more active and be more assertive.”
Anderson had a number of shots fall from mid-range, as he exposed FIU’s zone defense. Yet he was also more active around the rim, which impressed BC head coach Steve Donahue.

“His jumping is so much better than it was last year,” Donahue said. “He’s so much quicker to the rebounds, above the rim type of rebounds.”
The offense had much more of a flow to it than last year, when the Eagles moved the ball around the perimeter for much of their possessions and oftentimes were left shooting threes as the shot clock wound down.

“Offensively, we’ve grown a lot,” Anderson said. “The Spain trip really helped us, playing against guys that play similar basketball to us, and learning the mechanics of the offense better that way, through them.”
“The physicality we were able to play with was a huge step up,” Donahue added.

“Joe and O”
If you didn’t know this BC team, you’d likely think freshman guards Olivier Hanlan and Joe Rahon have been playing under coach Donahue for years. In their first college game, they both made a tremendous impact and were key in getting the win.

Hanlan handled the point for the majority of the game, and was a natural leader out on the court. He already seemed in control of the offense, directing the team on much of their possessions.

“I was extremely nervous at first, but the guys had trust in me to run the point and be aggressive,” Hanlan said. “Even if I had turnovers, or [if] I was not playing well, they stayed with me. It was really encouraging.”
Rahon played a team-high 37 minutes and had six assists, three more than any player in the game. While he didn’t convert on any of his field goals, the freshman from San Diego was 5-for-8 from the free throw line.

“Joe makes a lot of little plays that [don’t] show up in the stat sheet, but help us win games,” Anderson said. “He helps make smart basketball plays, whether it’s a hockey assist type of pass, or just driving and kicking and being under control and not getting a charge so we don’t have a turnover on that play.”
“Him and O both have a high basketball IQ. Anytime we can get their hands on the ball, a lot of good plays will happen, especially in the paint.”

In the Bonus
Lonnie Jackson was the only Eagles starter who didn’t score, shooting 0-for-5 from the three point line. Despite being a big part of the team last year, he couldn’t find a rhythm in the opener.

“He’s been playing so well. He’s been shooting the heck out of the basketball,” Donahue said. “It’s encouraging for me to watch him go 0-for-7 and win the game. We need Lonnie Jackson consistent—we can’t go 2-for-17 [from the 3-point line].”

Patrick Heckman, on the other hand, had a solid game. He scored 12 points in only 20 minutes, including back-to-back threes in the first half that put BC up by six. They never trailed after that point in the game.

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