“I saw that the point guard had turned his head and looked at his coach,” Brown said. “I guess he forgot I was right there.”
Brown sliced in for the steal and made the layup at the other end. The Eagles turned the ball over again on the next possession, giving Wolfpack guard C.J. Williams an opportunity to make a buzzer-beating 3-pointer from about 25 feet. Instead of tightening the gap to five or six points, the Eagles trailed by 13 at the half.
In the second half, Boston College drew to within six points once and seven points on three occasions, but never closer.
“They took the momentum back late with those last two plays, and that gave them a lot of push going into the second half,” Boston College forward Ryan Anderson said.
Boston College, which started four freshmen and has nine on the roster, completes the season with its poorest record (9-22) since the 1998-99 season.
Picked to finish eighth in the league in the preseason, the Wolfpack (21-11) almost certainly need a win over Virginia for their NCAA résumé. ESPN bracketologist Joe Lunardi listed them Thursday on his “first four out” list.
N.C. State has played a rigorous non-conference schedule and has a winning league record, but also is 0-8 against RPI top-50 teams. The Cavaliers were No. 43 as of Thursday. They defeated N.C. State 61-60 in Raleigh, N.C., on Jan. 28 in the teams’ only meeting.
Because of injuries, Virginia will field seven scholarship players against the Wolfpack. Don’t expect N.C. State, whose own rotation only goes seven deep, to have much pity. The bubble has no room for compassion.