Chestnut Hill, MA – The Boston College Eagles defeated the Fairfield Stags 77-67 in a tightly contested Sunday afternoon game at the Conte Forum. Following a close first half, which featured seven lead changes and two ties, the Eagles opened a double-digit lead in the second half. That lead was cut to four with just over 1:30 left in the game. The visitors did not score again however, and the Eagles extended their lead from the foul line. Eagles’ star, Ky Bowman, who despite not having a great shooting game, helped his team earn their eighth win of the season. He finished with 19 points and 12 rebounds. Calvin Whipple, the Stags freshman guard, led the visitors with 21 points on 7-of-14 made three-pointers. With the win, the Eagles improve to 8-2, while the Stags fall to 2-9.
BC’s junior guard Bowman had a tremendous impact on the game on both ends of the floor. Offensively he got to his spots but struggled to finish over the length of the Stags’ guards, but on his makes he showed nice creative finishes and his great athletic abilities. Defensively, he created several turnovers by putting terrific pressure on the Fairfield Guards, who struggled for a good chunk of the game holding onto the ball when he was in the vicinity. He had three steals and drew at least one charging foul. His confidence stood out on this night, especially when he attempted 17 shots and made just four. His strength stood out when he made a couple of nice cross-court passes out of double teams and his terrific leaping ability helped create more possessions for BC. His hustle and his never-give-up on the play mentality is something to behold.
Freshmen guards, Wynston Tabbs and Chris Herren Jr. paced the Eagles offensive attack with 20 and 22 points respectively. Tabbs’ confidence in catch and shoot situations is noticeable and he has a very good three-point shooting stroke. In transition he consistently made good decisions, whether it was attacking the rim, spotting up, or finding an open teammate. He had six assists on the afternoon. His movement and cuts without the ball were spot on and helped create multiple offensive looks for the Eagles. Defensively, Tabbs has shown continuous improvement and makes good reads. He drew at least one charge and added a steal.
Herren is a guard who injects a lot of energy to the game. He got a rare start in this game as the Eagles were shorthanded. He often sprints up and down the floor and runs to the spots he knows he is most effective in. He has a really nice shooting stroke and confidence to shoot from the perimeter off the catch. He converted on three catch and shoot triples and one pull-up three. He showed some hesitation with shooting off the dribble despite being effective in that too. Defensively, he did a nice job staying in front of the Stags guards and had a steal, while deflecting a couple of passes with his active hands.
The 6’4” Whipple shot very well from long range for Fairfield and kept the visitors within striking distance up until the final two minutes. The guard had seen only 32 minutes of action over the last four games but showcased terrific shooting from downtown throughout the course of the game. His high 3-point shot volume mostly came off catch and shoot and spot up situations. He showed a good knowledge of the plays and is very decisive on how to get to the locations of the floor where he is most effective, often running the baseline from side to side. Defensively, he did not contribute much and had trouble denying the BC guards from getting where they wanted to.
6’8” senior forward, Johnathan Kasibabu added nine points and 10 rebounds for the Stags. The forward was very involved in pick n’ roll action which was basically the only action that the Stags had going to the rim in this entire game (they attempted 40 threes). He consistently rolled hard and embraced the physicality of paint positioning against the BC big men. He is a very good athlete and is a solid leaper for a player his size (240 lbs). He finishes strong around the rim and rebounds very well. He did a nice job affecting the shots of the BC bigs around the rim and helped nicely on driving guards. He held his ground well in the low post defensively and got rewarded by drawing a pair of offensive fouls in positioning battles. He did not show as much composure on the perimeter when asked to make decisions as he did in the low post and appeared to panic multiple times. He showed leadership on the floor and huddled the team together multiple times to make sure that everyone is on the same page on the defensive end of the floor in crunch time situations. The defense was able to get consistent stops following his last huddle, but the offense was just not good enough to help Fairfield overcome their deficit in this contest.
Up Next: The Boston College Eagles will travel to DePaul University (7-2), while Fairfield will pay a visit to the University of New Hampshire (2-8).
This article was written by Nadav Boker, a correspondent and scout for NetScouts Basketball. You can follow us on Facebook, or on twitter. We are looking for those interested in our basketball scout apprenticeship program. For information contact us and forward your resume.