Boston College men’s basketball had a case of déjà vu on Wednesday night. After losing to Pittsburgh in the game’s final minutes on Saturday, the Eagles once again failed to play a complete game and dropped another close one Wednesday.
BC (6–8, 1–3 Atlantic Coast) extended its losing streak to five games Wednesday, falling to Georgia Tech (7–8, 1–4) by a final score of 81–76 inside Conte Forum.
“It was déjà vu,” head coach Earl Grant said in his postgame press conference. “We’ve had the ball either tied or up two at the end of the game, needing a couple of good possessions. We just didn’t do it. Guys want to do it—they’re trying to do it. Things just haven’t bounced our way yet.”
Georgia Tech senior guard Michael Devoe, who came into the game averaging an ACC-best 21.1 points per game, finished with 13 points and nine rebounds. Senior forward Jordan Usher added 14 points, five rebounds, and four assists before fouling out for Georgia Tech.
But it was Tristan Maxwell who proved to be the spark off the bench the Yellow Jackets needed, as the sophomore finished with 22 points on 7-of-11 shooting from beyond the arc in just his fourth game for Georgia Tech, as he’s been out due to a foot injury.
Grant was quick to point out that it was not BC’s offense, but its defense—and inability to stop Maxwell—that lost the Eagles the game.
“Seventy-six points is enough to win most games,” Grant said. “Tristan Maxwell came in and hit seven threes. They got 80 points. That’s too many.”
BC’s bench also fueled its performance, as 44 of the Eagles’ 76 points came from non-starters. Junior forward Quinten Post came off the bench to post a career-high 24 points on 10-of-14 shooting for BC and added nine rebounds.
Senior Brevin Galloway hit a trio of 3-pointers to close out the first half, sending the Eagles into the break with a 38–36 lead. Galloway finished with a season-high 18 points on 7-of-14 shooting and 4-of-10 shooting from three.
After missing nearly all of last season for the College of Charleston with a torn ACL, Galloway has been working to get his knee to full health for most of this year.
“I saw a guy I’ve been seeing for four years,” Grant, who coached Galloway at Charleston, said. “He obviously is not back to his full athleticism, but he’s taking strides. He was critical tonight.”
Galloway’s performance was a step in the right direction for BC, a team that averages just over five 3-pointers a game at a 34 percent clip.
Leading 38–36 going into the second half, BC came out sluggish and found itself down 12 five minutes into the half.
The Eagles did not give up, however, and eventually reclaimed a 68–66 lead on a Jaeden Zackery 3-pointer with just under five minutes left to play. The lead was extended to four following a Post slam, but consecutive threes from Maxwell iced the game for the Yellow Jackets.
As a team, BC committed 16 turnovers, including a couple of critical ones at the end of the game.
“We just got to keep building, keep trying to figure out how to win, because, you know, that was a very winnable game,” Grant said. “Right now we have to deal with the fact that where we are ain’t really where we want to be. We’ve got to fight through it and continue to deal with adversity and continue to learn from it.”
Featured Image Courtesy of Keith Srakocic / AP Photo