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No. 25 Notre Dame powers past Boston College

No. 25 Notre Dame powers past Boston College
Published On: Tue, Feb 14
Dec 9, 2014; South Bend, IN, USA; The Notre Dame Fighting Irish players sing the Notre Dame Alma Mater after defeating the Mount Saint Mary's Mountaineers 93-67 at the Purcell Pavilion. Mandatory Credit: Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

BOSTON -- Notre Dame coach Mike Brey looked to his best players to bail his team out at Boston College on Tuesday night.

They came through.

Matt Farrell and Bonzie Colson, two players with Boston College connections, joined V.J. Beachem in keying a second-half rally that carried the No. 25 Fighting Irish to an 84-76 Atlantic Coast Conference victory over the Eagles.

"The one thing about Matt Farrell, he senses when we need it, and he's been that kind of assassin for us all year," Brey said after Farrell drilled back-to-back 3-pointers to tie the game with 13:10 left. "And then Bonz is Bonz -- they defended him pretty good, and I knew they'd come after him after the week that he had last week."

Colson is the current conference player of the week. His dad, also Bonzie, was on Al Skinner's Boston College staff for nine years.

Farrell actually committed to be an Eagle but re-opened his recruitment when Boston College fired Steve Donahue in 2014.

"It's always good coming back here -- reminiscing of all the times my dad was coach on the floor, practices and games," the younger Colson said of his father. His father is now a high school coach in the area.

"Every year I had birthday parties here," he said. "We'd go into the practice facility and have cake and ice cream and sing 'Happy Birthday.' I always would bring like four, five friends here. It was just a great experience."

Said Farrell: "Some guys called me 'traitor.' It was awesome. I like doing that. I like playing in these environments. It's an awesome school. I was excited about coming here, unfortunately Donahue got fired, so I re-opened."

Farrell and Beachem scored 11 points apiece in a second-half run that lifted the Fighting Irish (20-7, 9-5 ACC) to their third straight win and third consecutive 20-win season. It is their 13th 20-win season in the 17 seasons under Brey.

The Eagles (9-18, 2-12) took their 10th in loss a row.

Boston College came back from eight down and cut its deficit to two points with 56.8 seconds left, but Beachem rebounded a missed 3-pointer by teammate Steve Vasturia and made two free throws with 24.1 seconds remaining. That was it for the comeback.

Notre Dame, the leading free-throw team in the country, was 19 of 21 from the stripe.

In the second half, the Fighting Irish exploded for a 15-1 run over a 3:11 span, with Farrell drilling the twin treys to turn a six-point deficit into a tie. The run grew to 21-3, with Farrell, Beachem and Colson scoring all 21 points.

Colson led the Irish with 20 points, while Farrell scored 19, Beachem 16 and Vasturia 15. Beachem pulled down eight rebounds, and Vasturia dished out seven assists while grabbing six boards.

Notre Dame was back in the Top 25 after a one-week absence, getting there by defeating No. 14 Florida State on Saturday.

Freshman Ky Bowman led the Eagles with 29 points, and he also grabbed nine rebounds.

"We had no answers for him -- he's a good as any young guard in this league," Brey said.

Eagles leading scorer Jerome Robinson, who began the night fourth in the conference at 19.4 points per game, scored 11 but shot just 3-for-12 from the floor. Mo Jeffers scored 12 points and grabbed seven rebounds in the loss.

The Irish were down by 13 in the closing minutes of the first half. The Eagles were on top 49-39 at the break and were still up by 10 after the first 4 1/2 minutes of the second half. Notre Dame didn't take its first lead until Colson followed a missed shot with a slam dunk to make it 61-59 with 12:44 left.

In the end, it was just another painful loss for the home team.

Asked what his team has to do to win games like this, Boston College coach Jim Christian said, "Make plays. I hate to say it, but it comes down to making plays. We had an opportunities to make plays, you gotta make them. ... We have a small window anyway because we have some deficiencies, but when you get opportunities in the ACC, you gotta make the play. We didn't. It's a short answer to a complicated question, but it's the truth."

NOTES: Notre Dame beat Boston College for the eighth consecutive time, seven in the ACC after one in the Big East. ... Boston College scored a season-high 49 first-half points. The Eagles fell only one point shy of matching the most points allowed by Notre Dame in a first half this season. "It was like clinic stuff," Irish coach Mike Brey said. ... Notre Dame was guilty of just nine turnovers and had eight steals. ... The Fighting Irish play at North Carolina State on Saturday, while Boston College is at No. 17 Florida State on Monday night. ... The Irish and the Eagles meet again in South Bend on March 1.

Read the complete news article here...

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