Boston Tip-Off Classic: Reggie Jackson, Boston College Defeat UMass, 76-71, at TD Garden

Reggie Jackson and Joe Trapani each scored 17 points to lead Boston College past UMass 76-71 in the first ever Boston Tip-Off Classic at TD Garden on Saturday evening at 6:30 p.m. Drexel defeated Northeastern 63-58 in the first game of the day. Read more at BC interruption.

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Boston College 76, UMass 71: Reggie Jackson, Eagles Hand Minutemen First Loss In Boston Tip-Off Classic

BOSTON - Boston College is accustomed to fast starts, but in many cases, it has struggled to finish strong.

Yet the Eagles did both on Saturday night, scoring the first eight points of the game and closing the game with a 13-10 run on the way to a 76-71 win over rival UMass in the first ever Boston Tip-Off Classic at TD Garden on Saturday.

"It was such a hard fought game," said Boston College head coach Steve Donahue. "Both teams played extremely well. I give UMass a ton of credit."

Joe Trapani and Reggie Jackson led Boston College with 17 points a piece. Josh Southern had his best game of the season, scoring 16 points and grabbing seven rebounds. 

"I just wanted to contribute," Southern said. "I'm just trying to pick my spots and score."

"He's such a good basketball player," Donahue said about Southern. "He has great hands, he knows how to play. I thought he was a key to the game."

Anthony Gurley, who made 1-of-5 shots in the first half, finished with a game-high 22 points for Massachusetts. Freddie Riley and Daryl Traynham each scored nine points and both Terrell Vinson and Javorn Farrell added eight points a piece.

The Eagles (6-2) opened the game on a 14-6 and held a 20-10 advantage with 9:33 remaining in the first half. UMass (7-1) responded with a 9-0 run of its own, trimming the Eagles' lead to one, 20-19, with 7:40 left.

Clearly unaffected by UMass' resurgence, the Eagles regained their composure and scored the next eight points to rebuild their lead to 28-19 with 5:13 to play before halftime. The Eagles didn't let up for the remainder of the half, taking a 35-24 advantage into the break.

All throughout the game, the crowd was overwhelmingly on UMass' side. But that didn't matter one bit for Jackson.

"What environment?" Jackson answered when asked how the pro-UMass crowd at TD Garden affected Boston College. "I feel like playing at the Garden is totally irrelevant. It's not the biggest factor. It's just the game that we love, and that's why we play it."

Trapani led all scorers at halftime with 10 points for Boston College. Biko Paris scored six points and both John Cahill and Dallas Elmore scored five points for the Eagles.

Riley had a team-high five points for Massachusetts. Sampson Carter scored four points and six other players scored two points for the Minutemen. 

Boston College made 9-of-22 shots and 4-of-9 threes while Massachusetts hit 9-of-28 shots and just 2-of-10 shots from beyond the arc in the first half.

Danny Rubin's jumper and a Joe Trapani three gave Boston College a 37-26 lead one minute and 15 seconds into the second half. With 16:55 remaining, the Eagles had built their lead up to 41-30.

UMass used patience and solid fundamental play to pull themselves back into the game, eventually cutting the BC lead to 52-48 halfway through the quarter. The Minutemen even trimmed the deficit to two, 54-52, with 7:27 remaining.

But once again, the Eagles kept their poise and nursed the lead back to a healthy margin. Two free throws and a corner three from Jackson put Boston College up 59-54 with 7:02 left.

The final five minutes featured a solid display of heart and passion from both sides. UMass wouldn't back down, bringing the game within two once more, 63-61, with under four minutes to go.

Unfortunately for UMass, Boston College wouldn't back down either.

Jackson nailed a shot clock buzzer-beating three and Trapani made a layup to take a 68-61 advantage into the final three minutes.

"That was very, very big," Southern said. "We needed that at that particular time of the game. They were starting to make a run, and the three was really big for our team."

One minute and a half later, Jackson threw down a dunk to put the Eagles up 70-65.

A Riley jumper cut the BC lead to three at 70-67, but back-to-back baskets from Trapani and Southern, followed by one free throw from Rubin and another from Paris, sent the Minutemen packing.

Boston College shot 50% from the field (25-for-50) and hit 7-of-17 threes (41.2%) while the Minutemen shot at a 45.5% clip (30-of-66) and made 3-of-16 three pointers (18.8%).

In addition, the Eagles finished with 33 rebounds, 15 assists, five steals and 22 turnovers while the Minutemen totaled 34 rebounds, 12 assists, eight steals and 15 turnovers.

BC shot 79.2% from the charity stride (19-for-24) in the victory and had 18 personal fouls. UMass made 8-of-14 free throws (57.1%) and had 24 fouls.

Boston College hosts Providence at Conte Forum on Wednesday night at 7 p.m EST. UMass will host Maine at the Mullins Center on Wednesday at 7 p.m. EST (CBS 3 Now).

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Boston Tip-Off Classic: Boston College Leads UMass 35-24 At Halftime

BOSTON - Boston College scored the first eight points of the game and never looked back, taking a 35-24 lead over UMass into the break in the marquee game of the Boston Tip-Off Classic at TD Garden.

Joe Trapani led all scorers at halftime with 10 points for Boston College. Biko Paris scored six points and both John Cahill and Dallas Elmore scored five points for the Eagles.

Freddie Riley had a team-high five points for Massachusetts. Sampson Carter scored four points and six other players scored two points for the Minutemen.

The Eagles opened the game on a 14-6 and held a 20-10 advantage with 9:33 remaining in the first half. UMass responded with a 9-0 run of its own, trimming the Eagles' lead to one, 20-19, with 7:40 left.

Clearly unaffected by the UMass run, the Eagles regained their composure and scored the next eight points to rebuild their lead to 28-19 with 5:13 to play before halftime.

Boston College made 9-of-22 shots and 4-of-9 threes while Massachusetts hit 9-of-28 shots and just 2-of-10 shots from beyond the arc in the first half.

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Drexel 63, Northeastern 58: Chris Fouch, Dragons Best Huskies In Boston Tip-Off Classic

BOSTON - Chris Fouch scored a game-high 27 points as Drexel defeated Northeastern 63-58 in the first game of the Boston Tip-Off Classic at TD Garden on Saturday evening.

"Today, we missed a couple of assignments," said Northeastern head coach Bill Coen. "You have to tip your hat to Drexel. They were a tough opponent."

The loss was Northeastern's fourth of the season and their third in a row. Chaisson Allen led the Huskies with 19 points. Ryan Pierson scored nine points and both Joel Smith and Jonathan Lee added eight points in the loss.

Gerald Colds finished with 14 points and both Samme Givens and Daryl McCoy added six points for the Dragons. 

Northeastern (2-4) jumped out to an 8-4 lead after five minutes, but Drexel (5-1) went on a 17-6 run to grab a 20-14 lead with10:54 left in the first half. The Dragons never led by more than seven in the final 10 minutes of the opening half, and the Huskies crawled back into the game, cutting the Drexel lead to 33-31 at halftime.

Fouch scored 12 points in the first half for Drexel. Gerald Colds added seven points and both Frantz Massenat scored four points in the half for the Dragons.

Allen and Smith each had eight points to lead Northeastern in the first half. Pierson added seven points in the first half for the Huskies.

Northeastern made 13-of-28 shots and 1-of-5 threes and Drexel connected on 14-of-32 field goals and 3-of-6 three pointers in the first half.

The Huskies tied the game at 33 early in the second half, but the Dragons distanced themselves, taking a 45-41 lead with 14:35 to play in the second half. By the nine minute mark, Northeastern had trimmed the deficit to one point at 52-51.

But once again, the Dragons were able to create some breathing room, taking a 57-51 lead with 7:59 to go. The Huskies pulled within three, 59-56, with less than two minutes to go, but they would not get any closer.

McCoy grabbed his own miss and put it back for two, giving Drexel a 61-56 advantage with 27.3 seconds remaining. Allen knocked down a jumper for Northeastern to bring the Huskies back withing three at 61-58.

After a timeout, Northeastern fouled Fouch, who made both free throws to seal the Drexel victory.

Northeastern made 22-of-56 shots and 2-of-13 three pointers while the Dragons hit 24-of-61 field goals and 6-of-12shots beyond the arc.

The Huskies amassed 38 rebounds,  nine assists, six steals and had 10 turnovers. The Dragons had 38 rebounds, 10 assists, four steals and nine turnovers in the win.

Northeastern will look to halt its losing streak when it hosts the University of Rhode Island at Matthew's Arena on Wednesday night at 7 p.m. EST.

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Northeastern Vs. Drexel: Dragons Lead Huskies 33-31 At Halftime

BOSTON - Chris Fouch scored a game-high 12 points in the first half and Drexel took a 33-31 lead over Northeastern into the break in the first ever Boston Tip-Off Classic at TD Garden.

Gerald Colds added seven points and both Frantz Massenat scored four points in the opening half for the Dragons.

Chaisson Allen and Joel Smith each had eight points to lead Northeastern. Ryan Pierson added seven points in the first half for the Huskies.

Northeastern made 13-of-28 shots and 1-of-5 threes and Drexel connected on 14-of-32 field goals and 3-of-6 three pointers in the first half.

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Boston Tip-Off Classic: Boston College, UMass Battle For Commonwealth Cup At TD Garden

This year's battle for the Commonwealth Cup has an added significance as the annual meeting between in-state rivals Boston College and UMass will take place at TD Garden on Saturday evening as the feature game of the first ever Boston Tip-Off Classic.

Northeastern will host Drexel at the Garden in the first game of the classic at 4 p.m. ET before the Eagles and Minutemen do battle at 6:30 p.m. ET on Comcast Sportsnet.

Boston College leads the all-time series against Massachusetts 25-18. Recent history is also on the Eagles' side, as they have won nine of the last ten meetings. Boston College won six consecutive Commonwealth Cups from 2000 to 2006 before UMass won in 2007. BC has since rebounded, winning the last two games.

The Minutemen held a firm grasp on the series in the 90's, defeating Boston College in all six of their games that decade. Prior to 2000, the last time the Eagles had beaten UMass was back in 1979. Massachusetts also won the first ever meeting between the schools in 1905.

The last meeting between Boston College and Massachusetts was on December 23, 2009 when the Eagles prevailed for a 79-67 victory at Conte Forum. Joe Trapani and Corey Raji each had 18 points to lead the Eagles past the Minutemen. Rakim Sanders added 15 points and Reggie Jackson chipped in with 13 points for Boston College. Anthony Hurley led all scorers with 23 points and Sean Carter had 16 points and nine rebounds for UMass.

Boston College (5-2) enters Saturday's game against Massachusetts on a two-game winning streak. The Eagles most recently defeated Indiana 88-76 in the 11th annual ACC/Big Ten Challenge at Conte Forum on Wednesday night.

Reggie Jackson had yet another stellar performance for Boston College, scoring a game-high 27 points in the win over the Hoosiers. Jackson is off to a fast start, leading the team in scoring (19 points per game), assists (4.3 per game) and steals (1.9 per game).

Prior to that, the Eagles finished third in the Old Spice Classic in Kissimmee, Florida over the Thanksgiving weekend. Boston College topped Texas A&Mlost to Wisconsin in the semifinals and defeated California in the third-place game last Sunday.

This will be the first time that new Eagles' head coach Steve Donahue will face UMass in the Commonwealth Classic. Under former coach Al Skinner, Boston College went 9-4 against Massachusetts since Skinner's hiring in April of 1997.

Massachusetts (7-0) is off to its best start since it went 26-0 in the 1995-96 season, one which saw the Minutemen reach the Final Four. The Minutemen have rattled off consecutive victories against Rider (77-67), Sacred Heart (73-65), New Mexico State (71-57), TCU (67-48), American International (83-56), Holy Cross (83-76) and Quinnipiac (66-64) to start the season.

Their last game went down to the final buzzer, with Gurley hitting a buzzer-beater to send Massachusetts to victory over Quinnipiac. Gurley's shot was counted as a result of a goaltending call against the Bobcats. Javorn Farrell scored a game-high 25 points and Gurley finished with 19 points and two steals for UMass. Justin Rutty had 21 points in the losing effort for Quinnipiac.

Gurley has been the catalyst for the Minutemen, averaging a team-best 21.3 points in seven games. Farrell is second in scoring for UMass, averaging 12.4 points. Freddie Riley is also averaging 12.4 points and Sampson Carter averages 11.3 points and a team-high 5.1 rebounds per game.

As for Northeastern (2-3), which will face Drexel in the first game of the Tip-Off Classic, the Huskies will look to regroup after losing to Providence, 77-72, on Wednesday night. Chaisson Allen led Northeastern with 24 points.

The Huskies opened their season with a pair of close wins over Boston University (66-64) and Southern Illinois (63-62). Ever since, Northeastern has been caught in a rut, losing its last three to Siena (84-68), Utah State (56-54) and Providence.

Allen leads Northeastern in scoring (18.4 points per contest), rebounding (5.4 per game) and assists (3.8) in five games this season. Joel Smith is second in scoring, averaging 12.6 points.

Drexel enters Saturday's matinée match up at 4-1. The Dragons are coming off of a 62-50 win over St. Joseph's on Wednesday night. Chris Fouch has 17 points to pace Drexel in the win.

The Dragons' season began with a 75-72 win against Loyola (MD) and another victory over Pennsylvania, 77-56, respectively. Drexel dropped its only game of the season against Rhode Island, losing 74-68, before rattling off wins versus Binghamton (79-29) and St. Joseph's.

Fouch has been leading the Dragons this season, averaging 20.6 points. Sammie Givens is the only other player on the Drexel roster who is averaging double-digits in scoring, totaling 11 points per game. Givens also leads the Dragons in rebounding with 11.4 boards per game. Daryl McCoy, who is averaging 6.4 points and 10 rebounds in five games, has also made an impact for the Dragons.

For more information on the first annual Boston Tip-Off Classic, visit the event's official website.

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