By Brandon M. Patterson
CHESTNUT HILL, Mass. — When it comes to late game heroics, Boston College Head Coach Jim Christian wouldn’t want to see the ball in the hands of anyone other than Ky Bowman. And with good reason, as Bowman’s clutch play in overtime helped the Eagles defeat Georgia Tech, 80-72 at Conte Forum in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts.
In a game that saw the best players on each team foul out and needed an extra period to be decided, it became the Ky Bowman show.
Going scoreless in the second half, Bowman would step up for the Eagles, scoring eight of the teams 11 points in the extra period. The Yellow Jackets would only score three points in overtime – a free throw from Ben Lammers and a jumper from Abdoulaye Gueye.
“[Bowman] has an innate ability and confidence to take the moment,” Christian said. “He knew Jerome [Robinson] was out and the plays he made…that’s what makes him special. He’s a winner. There’s nobody in the country, in my mind, I’d rather have shoot that ball than him in those situations.”
Bowman’s stellar late game performance was contrasted by Georgia Tech’s Brandon Alston’s early game play.
The game started with an Alston layup. He paced the Yellow Jackets in the first half with 11 points. He scored the Yellow Jackets’ first five points and remained aggressive in the first half, but scored only two points in the second finishing with 13 points. This would be the most points he’s scored in a game since November 22 when he scored 20 against UT-Rio Grande Valley.
Georgia Tech got out to an early lead, paced by balanced scoring from the six players that saw playing time. All six players scored in double digits. They locked down the paint and got defensive stops, with Josh Okogie securing several rebounds on the defensive and offensive end.
The Yellow Jackets led by as many as 12 before the Eagles turned it on.
Georgia Tech’s interior defense forced the Eagles to shoot from outside. Unfortunately, Boston College made their shots from the arc.
Jerome Robinson hit two three-pointers on his way to 19 points. Jordan Chatman, who had a slow start, drained five three-pointers, and Ky Bowman added three. This kept Boston College in the game, but also gave them the lead in the second half.
As the scoring went back and forth in the second half, Brandon Alston would hit a jumper to extend the Yellow Jackets lead to 38-28 before the Eagles would figure out how to penetrate Georgia Tech’s ever-changing zone defense. The Eagles would tie the game at 40 with a 12-4 run.
After a Jose Alvarado jumper, Chatman would make a three-pointer for the Eagles to give them a 43-42 lead. The Eagles would lead by seven points at most but the Yellow Jackets would rally back to tie the game at 59 all. The Yellow Jackets would hold a narrow lead until the end of regulation, where the game was tied at 69.
Both teams were plagued with foul trouble. Robinson would foul out for the Eagles with 3:11 remaining in the game. Okogie would also be disqualified with 1:36 remaining in regulation. Both teams would have to look to their other players for scoring.
After the game, Bowman, who finished with 17 points, spoke about turning it on for his team in overtime.
“I kind of knew I was scoreless coming out of halftime,” Bowman said. “I don’t believe I scored until the last two minutes. At the moments when I needed to step up I did…so that’s the big thing.”
With the loss, Georgia Tech is now 10-11 overall and 4-6 in the ACC. Georgia Tech’s next game is February 11 against Duke.