CLEMSON, S.C. (AP) — Marcquise Reed scored a career high 31 points and Clemson ended a three-game losing streak with a 76-66 victory over Boston College on Saturday.
Reed had five 3-pointers as the Tigers (16-11, 6-8 Atlantic Coast Conference) won their eighth in a row over the Eagles (13-13, 4-10) in trying to revive their fading NCAA Tournament hopes.
Clemson was up 60-52 with 7:15 to go, but the Eagles tied things at 60 with eighth straight points from their Hamilton brothers. Jairus Hamilton hit a pair of 3-pointer and Jared Hamilton followed with two foul shots. That’s when Reed, the dynamic 6-foot-3 senior, took it upon himself to close things out by scoring nine of Clemson’s next 10 points.
He regained the lead for Clemson with two foul shots, made a short jumper, a long 3-pointer and two more free throws to open up a 70-60 lead with 1:43 to play.
Reed surpassed his previous best of 30 points set last month in a win over Georgia Tech.
Elijah Thomas had 14 points and 10 rebounds for his eighth game this year with double figure points and rebounds.
Jairus Hamilton and Ky Bowman led the Eagles with 17 points. Bowman, the ACC’s third leading scorer, had four 3-pointers on 6-of-21 shooting overall.
The Tigers came in off three straight losses, two in disheartening fashion in one-point defeats at Miami (65-64) and No. 18 Louisville (56-55) before getting thoroughly dominated at home by No. 16 Florida State this past Tuesday night.
And Clemson fell behind early in this one before Reed got going. His first basket, a strong drive to the hoop, put Clemson ahead for good with an 11-10 lead. He made four straight buckets during one stretch including a breakaway basket after his steal and a pair of 3-poitners to put the Tigers ahead 26-18.
Clemson’s defense was in full effect as well. Bowman struggled to find his touch early one as the Tigers had someone on his hip each time he touched the ball. Bowman made just one of seven attempts and had two of BC’s nine turnovers in the first 20 minutes as Clemson led 33-29 at the break.
Boston College: The Eagles fell to 1-7 in ACC road games, coming close again but failing to close things out. They came up short at North Carolina State last Wednesday night in falling 89-80 in overtime.
Clemson: The Tigers need a strong finish to ACC play. Beating Boston College was a solid start, although they have plenty of concerning games left down the stretch if they hope to return to the NCAA Tournament. Clemson has home games remaining with North Carolina and Syracuse along with road games against Pitt and Notre dame.
Boston College plays No. 18 Louisville on Wednesday night.
Clemson travels to Pittsburgh on Wednesday night.