For the second game in a row, Boston College women’s basketball successfully defended its home turf, but this time, the Eagles faced the threat of a nationally ranked defense in Virginia Commonwealth. As a result of an all-out, all game mentality, BC has now won all four games on its home court.
The Eagles’ prolific offense, currently ranked 35th in scoring in the country, faced off with a top defense that was at one point ranked in the top five in the country last year. VCU came into this matchup with all five of its starters from last year returning and was expected to be a tough competitor for BC.
The Eagles came out strong and set the pace early on in the matchup. They maintained halfcourt pressure throughout the whole first half and limited much of the Rams’ shooting ability.
Though it seemed like it was going to be a low scoring game at first, VCU could not stop the Eagles’ offense, which was playing arguably one of the best halves BC has seen all season.
BC opened up the scoring with a layup that Taylor Soule made look easy. Marnelle Garraud later stole the ball from VCU and made a jumper, putting the eagles up 12-2 after just under four minutes.
Garraud went on to play a fantastic game and recorded her first career double-double with a total of 12 points and 10 assists.
Milan Bolden-Morris led the Eagles with a total of 19 points, followed closely by Cameron Swartz with 15, and Emma Guy and Makayla Dickens, each with 11. Bolden-Morris was hot from behind the arc for the whole game, as she hit a season-high of five, just one short of a career record. Swartz shot 5-of-10 from the floor and 3-of-5 from behind the arc, with three rebounds and a career-high six assists.
The Eagles took advantage of VCU in the transition game, helping them to end the first quarter with a 13-point lead. By the end of the second, they were shooting 70 percent from the field and had expanded their lead to 22.
The Eagles brought the same high-intensity play from the first quarter into the second, where they kept up the full-court pressure. Defensive rebounds were BC’s strong suit, as Guy led the team with seven rebounds. Soule followed close behind with five.
Even with a great offensive and defensive effort, BC had a few missed opportunities for points, going just 7-of-13 from the foul line, which has been a problem area for the Eagles all season.
The second half reflected much of the same patterns of the first, as strong offensive and defensive play from BC prevented VCU from ever getting into a rhythm.
As well as the Eagles played on offense, they still struggled with turnovers. By the start of the fourth quarter, the Eagles had committed 15 turnovers, which in any other game, may have cost them the victory.
Even so, at one point in the fourth, the Eagles held a 33-point lead, their largest lead of the game. As a result of its prolific offense, BC finished the game with five players shooting in double figures and a final tally of 87-52.
Offense has been the most powerful weapon all season for BC, averaging 79.8 points per game, and this game was no different. Though the Eagles oftens struggle from the line, they make up for it through their defensive intensity, holding opponents to just over 60 points per game.
The Eagles hope to continue their offensive dominance as they travel to Puerto Rico to take on Charlotte and Tulane in a two-game, round-robin tournament.
Featured Image by Ikram Ali / Heights Editor