CHESTNUT HILL - Montel Harris became the Boston College Eagles' all-time leading rusher on Saturday afternoon, rushing for 106 yards on 21 carries, but his accomplishment were overshadowed as the Eagles lost to the Wake Forest Demon Deacons, 27-19, on Saturday afternoon at Alumni Stadium.
"Congratulations to Wake Forest," said Boston College head coach Frank Spaziani. "They did what they had to do. They have a good football team. They are well coached. It was a matter of them making plays when they had to and us not making them. We're close, but we're far away."
It was also a matter of senseless penalties, as the Eagles committed seven penalties amounting to 56 yards while the Demon Deacons only had two penalties for ten yards, resulting in BC's fourth loss in five games this season.
"The margin of error for us, where we are at, is minuscule," Spaziani said. "It's unconscionable, really, for us to have two 15-yard penalties in the first half and three offsides, two of them by veteran players. They are not trying to do it but we can't overcome some of that stuff. We have to get it corrected."
Boston College surrendered 392 total yards of offense to Wake Forest while mustering 336 total yards of their own. The Eagles outgained the Demon Deacons on the ground, 148-104, but were shellacked in the passing game, 288 to 188.
Chase Rettig threw for 188 yards and a touchdown on 23-of-47 passing (he also threw one interception) for BC while Wake Forest quarterback Tanner Price threw for 252 yards and one score on 19-of-29 passing.
"I thought BC's kids played really hard," said Wake Forest head coach Jim Grobe. "I thought they were much improved. They have had some tough injuries and getting healthy is really going to help them. I thought the quarterback [Chase Rettig] did some good things today. We are very fortunate to get out of here with a win. There is not a team that we play that is better coached than Boston College, so for us to get a win, it's big for us."
Wake Forest (3-1, 2-0 ACC) scored first on a two-yard rush by Josh Harris, putting the Demon Deacons up 7-0 with 10:55 to go in opening quarter. Nate Freese put Boston College (1-4, 0-2 ACC) on the board with a 36-yard field goal with 2:52 to play in the first.
Jimmy Newman's 22-yard filed goal put the Deacs up by seven with 13:41 to go before halftime. Freese tacked on another field goal, this time from 45 yards out, with 6:18 left to cut the BC deficit to 10-6. Brandon Pendegrass scored on a one-yard touchdown run with 1:04 left in the half, but Freese added his third field goal, this time from a career-best 52 yards out, with eight ticks left before intermission to decrease the deficit to 17-9.
Price (19-for-28, 256 yards, TD, INT) completed a 47-yard pass to Chris Givens with 12:01 left in the third quarter, accounting for the only points of the quarter and putting the Demon Deacons up 24-9. However, Rettig found Alex Amidon for a two-yard score with 13:05 to go in the fourth quarter, bringing Boston College within eight points.
Freese split the uprights on his fourth field goal of the game from 32 yards out, cutting the Wake Forest lead to 24-19 with an even six minutes left in the game. Newman added a 22-yard field goal with 2:59 remaining to boost the Demon Deacons' lead back up to eight at 27-19, sealing the win.
"Losing in general is frustrating, no matter how it happens," said BC linebacker Luke Kuechly, who recorded 14 tackles in the loss and extended his FBS-leading streak of games with 10 or more tackles to 27 consecutive games. "We thought we had a good chance, but giving up big play after big play on the defensive side of the ball makes you limited.
"We realized that we need to play football. This isn't some soft team, this is Wake Forest; this is the ACC. They have a great running back and they had a good offensive line. We didn't come out the way we needed to come out."
BC was presented with a chance to drive down the field and tie the game and faced a fourth down and four to go at the Wake Forest 47 yard line, but Rettig's rush up the middle wasn't enough for the first down.
Boston College heads south to face ACC rival Clemson next Saturday at 3 p.m. EDT.