CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – Boston College coach Steve Donahue has nine freshmen on his roster, and four in his starting lineup. Sometimes, the amount of on-the-job training they get depends on the pace of the game.
Eventually, he said, he knows they will run out of steam.
The Eagles did that after surging to tie No. 19 Virginia at 44-44 with 10:25 to play Thursday night, only to see the Cavaliers then launch a 20-3 run on their way to a 66-49 victory.
"It's a unique situation where we have nine freshmen, and the top seven out of eight are freshman," the Eagles' second-year coach said. "I think the kids have done a really good job.
"Some guys are hitting a wall and not playing as well as they were earlier."
He hopes those guys saw in Tony Bennett's Cavaliers what hard work can produce.
"I think they're a very good basketball team. They guard the heck out of you. They share it. And Mike Scott is a handful," Donahue said. "I think Tony does as good a job as anybody in the country coaching his guys up to play to their strengths. I think that's what you saw tonight."
Scott scored 18 points to lead Virginia.
Freshman Ryan Anderson had 12 points and 10 rebounds for Boston College (7-13, 2-4 Atlantic Coast Conference), which stayed in it by making seven 3-pointers before the Cavaliers took command. Fellow freshman Dennis Clifford scored eight points, and Lonnie Jackson also had eight, all after halftime.
The Eagles managed just one field goal in a 10-minute span as Virginia (16-3, 3-2) put the game away.
Virginia scored on five straight possessions early in the second half, and the Eagles scored on only three, but all three baskets were 3-pointers — by Gabe Moton, Jackson and Matt Humphrey.
When Virginia came up empty on a few consecutive trips, an inside basket by Jordan Daniels and a wide-open 3 by Rubin from the left corner tied it at 44.
That's when it all disintegrated for the Eagles.
A driving basket by Jontel Evans and another by Malcolm Brogdon gave Virginia a 48-44 lead. The Cavaliers failed to get anything out of consecutive turnovers by the Eagles, but BC then bailed out Virginia by fouling Akil Mitchell on a fast-break layup that he missed. He made both free throws.
A baseline jumper by Darion Atkins, another driving bank by Evans and Sammy Zeglinski's back-to-back 3-pointers made it 60-46. Two free throws by Scott capped the burst for the Cavaliers.
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