Boston University men’s basketball (11-12, 4-6 Patriot League) went on the road to Colgate University and won 76-68 to give the Raiders their first home loss of the season
Prior to Saturday’s meeting, Colgate was 8-0 in Madison County and had won 12 in a row dating back to last season. However, the Terriers scored first and never trailed in their second straight win.
“The guys came out and played with very good energy,” BU head coach Joe Jones said. “They did a good job of executing the game plan, [and] they’ve done a good job of listening and staying positive in the stretch where we weren’t successful.”
In the first seven minutes of the game, junior forward Tyler Scanlon hit two threes and in the first five minutes, the BU defense allowed just two points to take a 9-2 lead. After holding Holy Cross to just 37 percent shooting from the field Wednesday, they got off to hot start on defense against Colgate.
In the first 12 minutes of the game, the Terriers forced the Raiders into six turnovers, which was as many as BU forced in the entire game in a loss to Colgate on Jan. 19.
After Colgate started to hit some shots and cut the Terrier lead to two, BU ended the half on a 15-4 run to take a 38-25 lead at halftime.
Their offense was flowing and the defense was staying solid. In the first 20 minutes of the game, they had just two turnovers. Also, 25 points allowed in the first half is their new best in conference play this season.
For the game, the Terriers turned the ball over just six times. Coming into the game, BU was last in the Patriot League in total turnovers.
“We talked about [our turnovers]. We wanted 10 or less,” Jones said. “We did a good job [moving the ball].”
However, Colgate did not go quietly into the night. After keeping the Raiders at bay to start the first half, forwards Rapolas Ivanauskas and Will Rayman started to hurt the Terriers inside and out.
After scoring 10 points in the first half, Ivanauskas had 14 in the second half to go with a few offensive rebounds.
Rayman, who averages 12.7 points per game, was held to just three points in the first half. In the second half he scored six, but his three with under 10 minutes to go brought Colgate within two.
From there, the two teams traded baskets and the game stayed close. But still, the Terriers never gave up the lead thanks to some help from Scanlon and the defense.
After Rayman’s three, Scanlon responded right back with his own bucket from beyond the arc to give the Terriers a five-point lead again. The score would never get closer than a three-point difference.
Colgate turned the ball over three times in four possessions in the last four minutes of the contest. At the end of the day, the Terriers had forced 16 turnovers on defense.
“We’re learning. We’re doing some different things defensively,” Jones said. “The guys have done a good job up to this point, we just have to keep improving.”
BU made its free throws in the final minutes and held on to win 76-68. Scanlon had a team high 20 points and 11 rebounds, leading the way for a second straight Terriers win.
“We kept making plays,” Jones said. “We got stops late that we needed and made some foul shots down the stretch. I’m happy for the guys.”