CLEMSON, S.C. — Clemson could not buy a basket on Tuesday night.
The 20th-ranked Tigers missed 17 straight shots during a 13-minute stretch in the second half, which contributed to a 62-54 loss to Boston College at the Conte Forum in Chestnut Hill, Mass. Thanks to the loss, Clemson fell to 10-2 in the ACC standings and is hanging on to a half-game lead over the Virginia Cavaliers for first place.
“For whatever reason, we just kind of panicked tonight,” Clemson head coach Brad Brownell said. “I did not do a good job as a coach. I could not get my guys under control. I could not get them to relax. That is my fault.”
Clemson (18-5, 10-2 ACC) also struggled in the first half, as it ended that half making just 2 of its last 11 attempts from the field. The Tigers were just 2-for-19 in the final 13 minutes of the second half.
Turning the basketball over 17 times also did not help their cause. Clemson finished the night 16-of-52 from the field (31 percent) and were just 6-of-21 (29 percent) from three-point range.
Hunter Tyson scored a game-high 22 points to lead the Tigers. He was the only Clemson player that could make a shot it seemed like. He connected on six of his 13 attempts and was 4-for-7 from behind the arc. He was also 6-for-6 at the foul line and had eight rebounds.
Guard Chase Hunter was the only other play in double figures for Clemson. He scored 12 points, but was just 4-of-14 from the floor and 0-for-5 from three. PJ Hall had nine points on 3-of-12 shooting and grabbed nine rebounds.
“Hunter Tyson had a good game, but our better players struggled tonight a little bit and the Boston College kids were very competitive and played good basketball,” Brownell said. “We just did not play very well, and again, a lot of that has to do with their effort and give (Boston College) a lot of credit.”
Four different players scored in double figures for BC (11-12, 5-7 ACC), led by Makai Ashton-Langford’s 15 points. Jaeden Zachery added 13 points, while Quinten Post and Prince Aligbe dropped in 10 each.
After trailing the entire second half, Clemson tied the game at 45 on two R.J. Godfrey free throws with 7:42 to play. That capped a 10-0 run for the Tigers, who scored eight of the 10 points from the foul line.
“It took us a long time to get our legs back underneath us. That is the first time in a long time that has happened,” Brownell said.
But the basket was just too small for Clemson. The Tigers went another five minutes and 34 seconds without any points, as the Eagles built a five-point lead Clemson could not overcome.
The Tigers went from the 13:16 mark, following a Hunter jumper, to 17 seconds left in the game, on a Tyson three-pointer, in between baskets in the second half.
“We needed a couple of more stops and a couple of more better offensive possessions and we just did not do it,” Brownell said.
The second half was almost a carbon copy of the first. After building a 19-8 lead in the first 10 minutes, the Tigers not only missed shots, but they turned the basketball over too.
Following a pull-up jumper by Hunter with 11:19 to play, Clemson made just two of its last 11 field goal attempts to close out the half. To top it off, the Tigers turned the basketball over six times in the last 7:02 and did not score a single point in the last 3:25.
Boston College (11-12, 5-7 ACC) took full advantage of Clemson’s inadequacies on offense. The Eagles closed the first half on a 22-4 run to take a 30-23 lead into the break. They had two 8-0 runs during that span and outscored the Tigers 14-2 in the last 5:55.
Ten of BC’s 30 points came thanks to 11 first-half turnovers by Clemson.
Stat of the game: At one point in the second half, Clemson missed 17 straight field goals.
Injury update: Guard Brevin Galloway missed his second straight game after having emergency surgery on his groin last Thursday. Guard Alex Hemenway returned to action after missing 10 straight games due to a foot injury.
Player of the Game: Tyson scored a game-high 22 points and grabbed eight rebounds.
Key Moment: With the game tied at 45, Boston College’s Chase Kelley made a layup with 7:25 to go to put the Eagles up two points. Neither team made a field goal for nearly six minutes after the Kelley layup.
Up next: Clemson will play host to No. 23 Miami on Saturday at Littlejohn Coliseum in Clemson. Tipoff is set for 3 p.m. The game will be televised on the ACCN.
–photo by Brian Fluharty / USA TODAY Sports
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