Eagles Ride Strong Game By Steffon Mitchell, Beat Virginia Tech 77-73 In Overtime
It was a game that swung in countless different directions. But in the end it was the play of forward Steffon Mitchell (21 points, 15 rebounds) that helped Boston College defeat Virginia Tech 77-73 in overtime. With the win Boston College swept the Hokies for the first time since the 2013-14 season.
Virginia Tech jumped out to an early lead, and it continued to grow in the first quarter going as high as twelve points. But as the half wound to a close Boston College started to chip away at the lead, as the defense started to lock down, and momentum back in the Eagles favor.
The second half continued in a positive direction as Boston College erased the deficit and built a lead of their own, growing as large as six. But Virginia Tech, led by Landers Nolley's 29 points stormed back and brought the game to a one possession game. As the teams battled, Steffon Mitchell made one of the plays of the game when he hit a corner three pointer and was fouled to make it a four point play. But in the final moments Derryck Thornton missed the front end of a one and one, and Naheim Alleyne hit both of his free throws to tie the game and send it to overtime.
The overtime started off with the Hokies taking control, scoring the first five points. But BC who did a great job of attacking the rim all game, continued getting to the foul line which helped chip away at the lead. Nolley hit yet another three pointer to give the Hokies the lead with two minutes remaining in the overtime, but Mitchell scored the final five points for the Eagles to give BC the win.
This was a huge offensive game for Mitchell, who only averaged 6.1 points going into this game. He looked like a complete player, and if he can continue to have games like this he changes the trajectory of this team. Jay Heath also had a big game, scoring 18 points including some big three pointers in the second half. Kamari Williams also got major playing minutes, after CJ Felder missed the trip due to illness. The true freshman played good defense and dropped eight points of his own.
"I'm really proud of the courage our team showed," BC coach Jim Christian told reporters after the game. "That's a lot of guts. Those guys were out there playing to win the basketball game … Our guards had to play the whole game. Jared Hamilton got hurt in the first five minutes of the game. We didn't have numbers, but we found a way to win the game, and I'm proud of them."
It wasn't all positives, as Christian said Hamilton got hurt early in the game. While Nik Popovic was sent to the locker room after an incident on the bench. Both Luka Krajevic and Jairus Hamilton fouled of the game as well.
With this win Boston College has more ACC wins then they had all of last season. On top of that their schedule gets markedly easier to end the season. There is a good chance this team ends up in the top half of the ACC.
The Eagles resume play against on Wednesday at Miami.