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November 21, 2013

Eagles Can't Close Late

Turning Point

Both teams played a sluggish first half which resulted in a UConn three point lead at the break.

The Eagles quickly fell further behind early in the second half and UConn's lead grew to 11, 51-40, eight minutes into the half. DeAndre Daniels (23 points, 5 rebounds) was the catalyst of the run scoring 6 points during the stretch, while BC went ice cold shooting hitting only one field goal in the first 8:00 of the half.

The Eagles clawed their way back into the game only to see UConn pull away again. With just over 3:00 remaining, Shabazz Napier (20 points) hit a jumper to put his team up six. On BC's next possession, Alex Dragicevich got the ball stolen which led to a fast break layup by Daniels to put UConn back up 7.

BC responded with a little run of its own to make it a ball game in the final minutes. First Lonnie Jackson found Ryan Anderson (22 points 8 rebounds) on a cut to the hoop for a bucket. Then, Olivier Hanlan(19 points) squeezed through the UConn defense to the hoop and got a floater to go down to cut the lead to 68-65. After another defensive stop by the Eagles, Hanlan hit two free throws to bring BC back within one with 43 seconds remaining.

Napier was fouled by Hanlan on the next possession and went to the line for two shots, but only converted one. That gave BC a chance to tie the game or take the lead as it had the ball with 15 seconds left. Coach Donahue got just what he wanted out of a timeout, as Hanlan slipped by Napier and drove to the hoop for an open layup. Daniels came running through the paint to try and alter the shot and just might have, as Hanlan shot a layup hard off the backboard and missed.

Boatright hit two free throws to put UConn up 4 with 9 seconds remaining and the game looked over. Once again, BC just wouldn't go away Hanlan redeemed himself and buried a three to bring BC back within one. Napier hit one of two free throws, which gave BC one last chance to win or tie the game. The Eagles got the play they wanted as Garland Owens caught the ball at half court and quickly got the ball to Jackson. However, Jackson's three point attempt was blocked by Boatright at the buzzer.

What Went Right

BC came into this game without any success of stopping opposing guards from penetrating to the hoop. It was a minor miracle that the Eagles held Boatright to 9 points and Napier to 6-of-18 shooting from the floor. Some of that had to do with UConn settling for jump shots, but the BC guards did play a little better than they did in previous games on the defensive end.

The Eagles controlled tempo in this game which was a big reason why they hung with the Huskies for most of the night.

What Went Wrong

The offense really struggled through long stretches with either empty opportunities or just cold shooting. Overall, BC shot 8-of-26 from three which just isn't good enough against a team like UConn.

Decisive Matchup

In a game that was only decided by two points turnovers was probably the difference. BC had 10 turnovers in the game, and more than a few---16 to be exact--- went the other way for points. UConn committed only 3 turnovers in the game, which led to 2 BC points.

Biggest Surprise

BC had no answer for DeAndre Daniels on the defensive end. Daniels has had very few dominating games like this offensively in his career.

It was almost shocking not to see Patrick Heckmann get a shot at Daniels. After the game Donahue confirmed that Heckmann is fine and was trying "another guy".

Three Stars of the Game

1. Ryan Anderson-Anderson was BC's leading scorer with 23 points. Once again, he started off a game slowly and took a while to get going. The low point early was when he grabbed a rebound and Napier knocked the ball away and went up for a layup. Anderson deserved to see the pine for that play, but you have to wonder why he sat so many times during the first half. It seemed like the team needed his scoring punch.

2.Olivier Hanlan-Hanlan also didn't play well in the first half, but really carried BC for stretches in the 2nd half. You have to feel bad for Hanlan for missing the layup late.

3.Lonnie Jackson- Jackson gave BC a little scoring pop off of the bench with 8 points, including two three pointers.

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