The Providence College Friars defeated Boston College Tuesday night in a 100-95 thriller at Chapel Hill.
What a game! The 1113th meeting of the former Big East foes did not disappoint Tuesday, as the game between Providence College Friars and the Boston College Eagles showcased future NBA talent, as well as give the consumer a great ball game.
Things started off a bit slow for the Eagles, as the Friars got off to a hot start. Boston College was without Junior forward Nik Popovic due to a concussion, and that played well into the Friars favor early on. Providence’s Nate Watson was scoring at will and dominating the glass, as the Eagles really had no big bodies to contest him. Watson propelled the Friars to an 11 point lead and it looked like they would run away with it.
Then Providence College ran into Chris Herren Jr. Coming off the bench, Herren exploded at the end of the 1st half. Playing lockdown defense, Herren stopped the Friars scoring onslaught with a steal and fantastic on-ball defense. On the offensive end, he continued the spark, as he went 3-3 from deep and gave BC the lead. At the half, BC lead 43-39 and had all the momentum in the second half.
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The second half can be summed up as simply as Eagles’ Jordan Chatman vs. Friars’ A.J Reeves. Both men went scored at will, and the teams exchanged leads and battled back and forth. In the final minute, BC held a 3 point lead twice, but the Providence College Friars just couldn’t be denied. With 2.6 seconds left in regulation, A.J Reeves continued his hot night and buried a 3 from the top of the key to tie the game at 87. Without any timeouts, Ky Bowman sprinted up the court and shot a deep 3 that rimmed out, and sent the game to OT.
Overtime was where Providence gained the edge. Nate Watson gave the Friars an important 2 point lead with under 2 minutes left, which became really important quickly. Steffon Mitchell missed the game-tying free throw with a minute remaining and then immediately fouled PC’s Isaiah Jackson who sunk both of his free throws.
Ky Bowman than had a stretch he would like to forget. After getting fouled, he too missed a free throw but was given a chance of redemption with 20 seconds left and BC down two. Bowman drove to the lane, had about two steps and just flat out missed a layup. Jackson then sealed the game with a pair of free throws and that was game.
Ky Bowman shooting 6-19 from the field was a big issue for the Friars. Jim Christian stuck with his star player all night, and that was ultimately the teams’ downfall. Despite playing spectacular in the first half, Herren Jr. barely played the rest of the night which was another questionable coaching decision.
Ed Cooley proved why he is one of the most underrated coaches in the country, as he maximized A.J Reeves shooting ability, as well as getting a steady dose of Nate Watson. Cooley should be concerned with his star guard Alpha Diallo though, as the star guard shot just 4-19 from the floor and was in foul trouble early on. Nonetheless, Providence played very well on the offensive side of the court and that ultimately decided the game.
Reeves lead Providence with 24 and BC’s Chapman lead all scorers with 24.
The Providence College Friars picks up the huge out of conference win (7-2) and moves on to face Umass (5-4) at home on Friday. Boston College (6-2) has a chance of redemption as they travel to College Station and play Texas A&M (3-4).