BLACKSBURG – Boston College’s Lonnie Jackson hit a 3-pointer in the final 30 seconds, and Virginia Tech missed a shot in the waning moments, all of which sent the Hokies to a 62-59 defeat in an ACC game played Saturday afternoon at Cassell Coliseum.
The loss marked the Hokies’ fourth in their past five games and sent them to 8-7 overall on the season, 1-2 in the ACC. BC, which had lost four straight and seven of eight, moved to 5-11, 1-2 in league play. The Eagles also beat the Hokies for the sixth time in the past seven meetings between the two schools.
“That was a tough loss,” Tech coach James Johnson said. “We were in position to win the game and didn’t make the plays to close it out. They’re [the players] frustrated. We need to regroup and move on to the next one.
“We have to find a way with our youth. We need to grow up. We need to take care of the basketball. We were up one [56-55] and threw away the ball on a long pass [with 3:10 remaining]. A freshman, Ben [Emelogu], he’s just not seasoned, and he threw a long pass that we should have pulled out and run offense. They probably would have fouled us or had to score again. We just need to learn how to win.”
Tech took a 59-58 lead on a 3-pointer by C.J. Barksdale with 1:36 remaining. BC’s Olivier Hanlan turned the ball over on the Eagles’ next possession, but the Hokies couldn’t take advantage, as Jarell Eddie missed a 3-pointer with 47 seconds left.
BC then called a timeout with 33 seconds to go. After the timeout, Jackson got a good look from the left wing and hit the 3-pointer to give the Eagles a 61-59 edge with 27.4 seconds remaining.
The points marked Jackson’s only points of the second half.
Tech got the ball up the court quickly and called a timeout with 22.8 seconds left. The Hokies ran the clock down before getting the ball into the hands of guard Adam Smith, who took a jumper from the baseline that came up short with two seconds to go.
BC’s Joe Rahon got the rebound, and Smith fouled Rahon with a second remaining. Rahon made the first free throw, but missed the second one. Eddie got the rebound for the Hokies and time expired.
“If Adam had the shot, he would take it,” Johnson said of the play. “We also moved Eddie to the 4 [power forward] and slipped him out for a shot. They did a great job of defending both actions and forced us into a tough shot.”
Jackson – who missed BC’s first three games this season with a hamstring injury and had scored in double figures just once this season – came into the game averaging just 4.4 points per game. But he led BC with 17 points, hitting 6 of 11 from the floor, including five 3-pointers. Hanlan added 14.
Virginia Tech shot just 28.6 percent in the second half (8 of 28) and 35.1 percent for the game (20 of 57). The Hokies also missed nine free throws.
“We had looks, but we just haven’t been shooting the ball well lately,” Johnson said. “We need to start making some shots. We left a lot of points out there – layups, open shots, free throws. We left a lot of points out there.”
Smith led the Hokies with 12 points, and Barksdale added 11. Eddie, Tech’s leading scorer at 16.6 points per game, scored 10 for the Hokies, but made just 3 of 14 from the floor.
The Hokies continue their season on Wednesday with an ACC game against Clemson at Cassell Coliseum. Tipoff is slated for 7 p.m.
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