On Wednesday night in Cassell Coliseum, Boston College hit a season-high 12 3-pointers en route to an 82-76 win over Virginia Tech, the fifth straight defeat the Hokies have suffered in the series.
Though the Eagles (12-13, 6-8 ACC) ranked 341st in the country in 3-point percentage entering the contest, they couldn’t seem to miss. After making seven of their 15 attempts in the first half, which helped them to a 39-27 lead at recess, they made five in the second half.
Quinten Post led the way with a team-high 24 points and drilled three treys, all in the first 20 minutes. Boston College was without starter DeMarr Langford Jr., who head coach Earl Grant listed as day-to-day on Monday, and sophomore Jaeden Zackery only saw seven minutes due to an injury. But true freshman Chas Kelley III played a season-high 27 minutes and scored 17 off the bench.
Grant Basile had a game-high 33 points for the Hokies (14-10, 4-9 ACC) on 12-of-21 shooting, and he dished out four assists. It’s the second 30-point game he’s recorded this season. However, the rest of the team was 14-of-41 (34%).
“I thought those kids took great shots,” Tech head coach Mike Young said after the loss. “[But they] didn’t seem to have their same pop. I think consequently, that’s very rare for our teams. That affected our defense, too, and that can’t happen.
“You’re going to have some nights when you don’t shoot it as well, but you’ve got to continue to do the right things and rely on your habits defensively, and we didn’t do that.”
The Hokies only turned it over five times, which tied a season low. It’s the fewest in a loss since the 2014 ACC tournament vs. Miami. But Boston College held them to 42% shooting, which really limited production.
Tech missed 15 of its final 20 shots over the final 15 minutes in the first half; BC went on a 32-14 run and pulled away over that stretch. Though the team was a bit better after intermission (44% instead of 39%), it couldn’t complete the comeback.
Basile scored 25 in the second half and helped the Hokies inch within four points with 18 seconds to play. Young said he “gave everything he had in his tank.” And it helped that Boston College only made five of its final 15 field goals over the final eight minutes. But Kelley nailed two free throws that sealed Tech’s fate.
Outside of Basile, no other offensive option was consistent for Tech. While the looks weren’t the worst, they didn’t get down; only 10-of-32 3-pointers found the bottom of the net, and VT only hit 2-of-13 in the first half.
The Eagles picked their poison and shut down Hunter Cattoor and Sean Pedulla. The duo, which combined for 32 points and 9-of-23 vs. then-No. 6 Virginia on Saturday, were 6-of-23 for 20 points. Almost all of that came in the second half, too; they were 1-of-10 for three points in the first 20 minutes.
“Our coach always talks about hunting, and on the road, he preaches we have to be six-to-eight points better,” Kelley said. “We were a unit. … Virginia Tech has a lot of guys who like to hunt shots, which can make a team very dangerous. Our communication on the defensive end, that was really big for the win.”
Pedulla finished in double figures with 12 points while Justyn Mutts added 16. But the Hokies didn’t have the firepower to keep up with a Boston College team that was lights out from behind the arc.
Tech did a good job defending Makai Ashton-Langford, who was the key to BC’s win in December, holding him to nine points. However, he had 12 assists. The ball movement was fantastic for the Eagles, who finished with 24 assists on 29 made baskets while outrebounding the Hokies by 10, 40-30.
“The biggest thing for that defense is the pick-and-roll,” Post said. “They really struggle to guard the late rolls, so we were really playing on that.”
Post and Kelley were huge, as was Devin McGlockton’s 14 points (6-of-7). Seven different players chipped in to help the Eagles shoot 49%. And their bench outscored Tech by 22 points, 29-7. That was a problem for the Hokies in Chestnut Hill, too, where they had just one bench point.
“They’re a really good defensive team,” BC head coach Earl Grant said. “They make it hard for you to score. They’re in their gaps, usually in good position. So we wanted to move them and spread them out, because trying to get anything on the first side, it’s hard to get to the paint.
“I thought we did a really good job of being mature, which we always haven’t been. … But today was a good step – we were mature enough to get to the second or third side to give the defense a chance to break down.”
Now the Hokies turn to a two-game stretch on the road at Notre Dame and Georgia Tech. They’ve yet to win away from Cassell Coliseum, posting an 0-7 record. The losses have come by an average of 5.6 points, and three – BC, Wake Forest and Clemson – were one-possession games.
With seven regular season games remaining, Tech’s résumé isn’t completely ruined. Two Quadrant 1 games with Miami (home) and Duke (away) remain. But it didn’t exactly do itself any favors losing a Quadrant 4 game on Wednesday night. Logic would indicate that any hope for a postseason berth would require some magic and an almost-perfect end to the season.
“I’ve seen us be really good,” Young said. “And [I] know that we have it. It’s got to be night-in and night-out. And it has been here for a bit. We’ve got seven left – four on the road, three at home. Load it up, let’s go play.”
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Mind-boggling to still be talking about quadrants. This team is 3-9 in its last twelve games. It’s even a little strange to hear MY talk about there being seven games left. There’s one game to focus on — the next one. This team hasn’t done that very well. They could conceivably lose four or five of these next seven if they’re not careful.
Pitt, Duke, Miami — probable losses.
FSU and ND — pick ’ems.
GT and Louisville — probable wins if they were at home, but they’re on the road so all bets are off.
I get the 3-9. But, that’s kind of making things look worst case by starting with the losing streak. We are also 3-2 in our last 5 games against teams with a combined 42-26 record in ACC play. But, I share your concern that we could have trouble getting 4 wins, which we likley need for NIT.
Shameful outing. Bad coaching. Bad playing. No sense of urgency. No focused intensity until the very end. No blue collar work on the offensive glass. No composure. No timeouts soon enough in bad momentum swings. I would have benched all 5 starters and put in all #2s for a while regardless of outcome. The starters were playing like they “thought” like they should win rather than actually playing TO WIN.
What The. Actual. Hell?
CMY better figure out how to beat BC, because these are resume killers! The very definition of a bad loss!
We need another miracle run in the ACC tournament to make it to the Dance.
Historically, BC has out number: 23-13.
Really disappointing loss that more than likely bursts VT’s bubble with respect to an at-large birth to the NCAA’s. Maybe if they win out and make a run in the ACC tourney it would be possible with the Q1 record but a long shot at this point.
Two things that were exceptionally frustrating:
1) After a hot start shooting, VT kept trying to shoot their way back into the game when they were obviously struggling from the outside. The team didn’t seem to have the composure to focus on getting the ball inside and play inside out after some makes to stem the tide.
2) On the defensive end, you can’t let BC score 70 on the road much less 80+. BC averages about 55 points on the road. Granted, they were much better from outside than normal but holding BC in the 60’s would have made this a sloppy, gritty win versus a resume damaging loss.
This doesn’t have size on the perimeter and doesn’t shoot well enough to justify being that small and unable to create their own shot getting to the rim.
Just like football, we need better talent to win consistently – IMO this is not on the coaches… our margin for error against most teams is razor-thin. Yes, we’ve lost a bunch of games by a few points, but we’ve also won a bunch of games by a few points.
Then how does VT beat more talented teams, and lose to less talented teams, than they are?
It seems coaching shares some blame for not properly preparing and motivating the team night-in, and night-out. I know players play, and fail to do the right things, on their own. But coaches are paid millions to help them to do well, and to avoid ugly losses.
Again, I think our margin for error is so thin in both sports – we certainly have good players, but lack depth and just don’t have superstars who can put their teammates on their back and carry them to victory when necessary… a Michael Vick, Corey Moore, David Wilson, Kevin Jones type talent.
It’s not coaching when players w/good shotsmiss. It’s thelaw of averages which was the case in the loss to Syracuse.
Not sure I agree with that. Everyone says you have to be more intense and focused on defense, and more intense and focused on offense. Well, that includes your shooting. There is an intensity and focus that you have to have when shooting the ball. Just like any other facet of a successful game. I never buy it when everyone is missing, always. It is a lack of intensity, focus, and composure, and good coaching gets the mind sets in the right place.
Good teams win when they are supposed to and eke out a few others.
VT loses too many that they should win and ekes out a few others.
Bad play against better teams is not the problem. In true VT fashion, they can make it close against almost anyone… and usually lose. But they are not able to win against teams on their level… mediocrity defines VT in basketball and football.
We had a BAD game, thoroughly beaten in all aspects of the game. Need to move on to the next one.
CMY didn’t say it but we all know it, celebration of the Saturday win carried over into last night and clearly we thought all we had to do was show up with our uniforms on and get the W.
For the record, I like CMY, but am really getting tired of completely inconsistent effort. Last year we beat 2 final 4 teams in the ACC tournament and then get kicked to the curb in the opening round game. We just have too many games where we stink it up and make a really lousy team look like NBA caliber.
This was BC, and that doesn’t stand for Boston Celtics.
You got a point here. The inconsistent play is troubling.
But they are 23-13 vs. us all-time.
Agree. Like MY a lot but he is getting outcoached too often. Last night was a glaring example. He doesn’t seem to make any in game adjustments and never uses timeouts in a timely manner. Very frustrating.
What’s he going to adjust if his players can’t guard pick and rolls in February with any line up he tries. He can’t teach it during time out and he can’t drop them into a zone because he doesn’t have one. He needed to start trapping 4 minutes earlier and he might have caught up. But I guess his players were too gassed, so he waited until 1:32. This thing of not guarding ball screens is becoming our season.
This was a must win game. We played like crap and lost. We will stay at home after the season is finished. We were not nearly as good as we thought. The end.
We lost due to AWFUL shot selection in the 1st half. Also we let BC control the tempo of the game and without both Mattox & Rice we have a short bench. Sure hope for better days. GO HOKIES!!!
HA! Considering Tech’s level of play right now, I’m not even sure the NIT is a realistic possibility at this point!
Coach Young’s comments certainly include a lot of ‘buzz’ words. The loss to BC is like the adage same song – second verse. The performance results for both 2022 and 2023 have been close to a ‘disaster’ ! You can’t kid this ‘kidder’ in that this coaching staff is in way over their heads ! Just check the records for both years ! It is difficult to refute the cold hard facts ! I see no miracle finishes this go around. Amen !
“this coaching staff is in way over their heads” – delusional.
Respectfully disagree. Our resume IS completely ruined. Another year where we sit and pray for a conference tournament miracle to get us into the dance.
We’ve had a lot of games where the guards/wings have awful shooting nights together. Several times it was without Cattoor. Tonight, it was with him. Usually you think of an off night by one player being offset by someone having a good night.
Man, it’s frustrating. Things were looking up. We got a good start tonight. Schedule ahead was favorable. Now, assuming we have to win 4 to get to the NIT, that does not look like a sure thing, despite playing several bottom feeders. We can clearly lose any road game and can drop one at home as well. This is a reminder of some of the games against lesser teams that we needed to win to make the NCAA under Greenberg. And we couldn’t do it.
Can easily lose 2 at home-Pitt, Miami
Pitt is scary.
At home, we have defeated:
UNC, Duke, UVA.
We lose to BC. At home.
It hurts my brain, trying to reason this out, so I’ll just shrug, and say IIWII.
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