CHESTNUT HILL - Olivier Hanlan kept the Boston College Eagles in the game with his game-high 19 points, 13 of which came in the second half, but the Bryant Bulldogs hung on for a 56-54 win on Sunday afternoon at Conte Forum.
Bryant victory was the first ever ACC win and first over Boston College.
Joe Rahon was the only other Eagles player to reach double figures in scoring, finishing with 11 points and also four rebounds and three assists. Ryan Anderson, the team's leading scorer who was been dealing with an ankle injury, had eight points and 14 rebounds while Dennis Clifford had just two points but 10 rebounds. Boston College shot 40.4 percent from the field (21-for-52) and made only 4-of-18 three-pointers. The Eagles collected 40 rebounds and finished with six assists, five blocks, three steals and 15 turnovers.
Dyami Starks led the Bulldogs with 17 points and Frankie Dobbs had 15 points and eight rebounds. Bryant leading scorer Alex Francis was held to six points. Bryant shot 32.8 percent from the floor (20-for-61) and hit 8-of-24 threes (33.3 percent) and had 38 boards, 11 assists, six steals, two blocks and 10 turnovers.
Offense was nowhere to be found in the first half, with Boston College and Bryant combining to go 19-for-58 in the opening twenty minutes. The Eagles were off the mark on their first seven shots and did not score until an Anderson lay up at 15:55, and the Bulldogs led 7-2 with 14:34 to play.
Inconsistent scoring plagued both teams down the stretch in the half, as both teams made just 3-of-12 buckets to open the game and Bryant held a 12-10 advantage with 7:36 left. After Bryant regained a three-point lead, 19-16, at 3:28, the Eagles would hit two-of-three treys and make it 22-21 at 1:20.
The Bulldogs ended the half on a 5-2 run and led 26-24 heading into halftime.
Bryant kept things close for the first five minutes of the second half, but with a little help from Hanlan built a 44-36 lead with 10:18 remaining. The Bulldogs didn't quit, though, and mounted a rally of their own to go up 51-49 after a couple of threes and led 53-51 with 1:35 left.
Francis drew a foul with just over a minute left and hit one of two free throws, but Rahon hit two free throws on the other end after a blocking foul to cut its deficit to two, 54-52, with 41.9 seconds to go. After Dobbs made one of two free throws following a Heckmann foul, Hanlan drew a foul under the basket and made both free throws, cutting the Bryant lead to 55-54 with 31.1 seconds left.
The Bulldogs missed on the first of a one-and-one, Hanlan had the chance to win the game, but his jumper was off the mark. Another Bryant missed free throw with 8.1 seconds to go presented BC with a chance to tie or win the game, and after a timeout, but Hanlan committed a charge. The Eagles got another chance after a lane violation, but Anderson's desperation three missed.
"I just thought they played with an understanding where we did not play really smart basketball, and that's ultimately my fault," Donahue said. "We did not play like we were coached very well."
Boston College is off until Wednesday evening when it faces the Penn St. Nittany Lions in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge (9:15 p.m. ET tip off on ESPNU).
For more Boston College basketball coverage, visit our blog, BC Interruption.