With a little over a minute left in the third quarter, Marti Mosetti streaked across the court to the sound of cheers. Capitalizing on a turnover by St. Mary’s College, Mosetti made a layup and brought the game to a tie. Only four minutes ago, Boston College had been losing by 10 after giving up six unanswered points at the beginning of the half and battling to stay in the game.
After being fouled on the shot, Mosetti drained a free throw to give BC a one-point lead over St. Mary’s. It would be the only time that the Eagles had the lead during the 62-54 loss to their non-conference opponents from the West Coast.
The loss comes as part of a slow start to the season, with BC losing to Hartford and Seton Hall around a win against Boston University. Going into the first quarter, BC (1-3) quickly fell behind as the St. Mary’s (4-0) defense held it to five points total, while scoring 10 itself. Saint Mary’s sophomore Sydney Raggio contributed heavily to this deficit, going 4-for-4 in the first and eventually leading them team in shots and shots made with 11-of-14.
“She was phenomenal tonight,” head coach Erik Johnson said. “She hit every little jump shot. She earned a bunch of points and she also was so active that we lost her a couple of times and we gave her easy ones.”
Coming into the second period, BC began to mount a comeback, turning the 10-point deficit into only two by halftime. The Eagles also stepped up defensively and held St. Mary’s to six points in the second half. Despite this, the Eagles quickly racked up mistakes in the beginning of the third quarter and once again allowed the Gaels to mount a double-digit lead. Three missed layups by center Mariella Fasoula, coupled with three baskets by St. Mary’s, dug BC back into its earlier hole. But once again, BC mounted a comeback, culminating in Moretti’s lead-taking free throw.
Going into the fourth quarter, the Eagles were down by only four points and managed to stay in the game, but would never manage to get closer than that four-point deficit. In the last 25 seconds, St. Mary’s junior Stella Beck knocked down two free throws and finished the game with an eight-point lead.
“We kept coming back, coming back, coming back, but we kept shooting ourselves in the foot with just one silly play on offense or defense and they took advantage,” Johnson said.
With 24 total personal fouls and 19 turnovers, BC struggled to capitalize on the gains it made throughout, after coming back from double-digit deficits three times. Fasoula, who went 7-of-15 on the day, fouled out in the final quarter, harming the Eagles’ game under the basket.
“Those lack-of-focus mistakes end up really being like double-edged swords,” Johnson said. “And so we made those mistakes in the beginning in both halves and that allowed them to get away and then we had to come back you know and we just came up a couple of possession short.”
Despite repeated comebacks, the Eagles could never fully capitalize and were marred by mistakes. Johnson hopes that this loss will help the players realize areas where they can improve and demonstrate further discipline.
But, while the 1-3 opening record does not appear positive, Johnson still believes the team is improving and growing.
“There’s a ton of promise with all these really good young players,” he said. “We’ve just gotta be smarter and take care of business a little bit better.”