The Boston University men’s basketball team dropped their second game against the College of the Holy Cross this season by a score of 69-71.
The Crusaders (10-18, 7-8 Patriot League) beat the buzzer after an out-of-bounds call went their way with just two seconds left on the clock. Holy Cross won back-to-back games for the first time since Jan. 2 and took home the Turnpike Trophy against the Terriers (12-16, 5-10 PL).
“We struggled in the second half to score [for] a period, but it was one of our better games,” said head coach Joe Jones. “I thought we got some really good contributions from [junior forward and guard] Anthony Morales and [freshman forward] Otto [Landrum] off the bench.”
Landrum became a difference-maker very late in the game. On top of scoring 10 points, he grabbed five rebounds and collected three blocks in the last three and a half minutes of the game.
Landrum’s last block interrupted a potential game-winning shot from the hands of HC’s junior guard Bo Montgomery. However, the ball bounced out of bounds, giving the Crusaders a second chance that they took full advantage of.
Montgomery got the ball back into his hands and accomplished what he set out to do before Landrum’s block, sinking the dagger as the buzzer blared across the court.
The Terriers started the game strong, unlike their last performance against Holy Cross, when they lost the lead 30 seconds into the game and never gained it back. BU jumped out to an early 14-4 lead seven minutes into the game.
Offensive rebounds were a key to that success, with the Terriers sinking 13 points from second-chance opportunities.
However, Holy Cross came out hot immediately after halftime. The Crusaders ran up a 15-point lead within the first eight minutes of the second half, outpacing BU 53-38.
“They were able to beat us in the middle of the floor,” said Jones. “The kid Montgomery really got going — he had a really good game. He got to the rim.”
The Terriers were able to fight back and force a close game with the help of graduate guards Walter Whyte and Jonas Harper, who each had 17 and 16 points respectively.
Crusader freshman guard Will Batchelder stung the Terriers in their last matchup on Feb. 1, but this time, BU held him to only nine points. One of the main changes to Jones’s approach for the second matchup was to shut down Batchelder, and it proved effective.
HC’s senior forward Gerrale Gates was also a specific target for BU double-teams, Jones said. Gates is the Crusaders’ leading point-getter this season, but BU was able to hold him to just 12 points, making five out of 14 shots.
“If you told me that Batch[elder] got nine points, and Gates got 12, I’d think we’d be in a position to win, and we were,” said Jones.
BU looks to bounce back against another Patriot League opponent, the Bucknell University Bison, at Case Gym on Saturday at 1pm.