Sophomore Ryan Anderson was the story of the game once again for the Eagles, exploding for 19 points in the first half. The 6-foot-8, 220lbs forward led things offensively for Boston College, scoring the team’s first eight points of the game.
The Eagles appeared to be gaining confidence as the game progressed in the first half, answering every Baylor run with a run of their own. With Anderson looking unstoppable, he put the exclamation mark on his dominating performance in the first half by draining a half-court heave that put the Eagles up 43-41 entering the break.
After the break it was a much different story for Anderson and the rest of Boston College.
The half begun with Anderson looking like he was picking up right where he left off. He made freshman Isaiah Austin look silly, baiting him into a foul with a veteran move. Austin left his arm out in front of Anderson and the Eagle brought his arms into the Baylor center forcing the ref to blow the whistle. With that move it appeared Boston College had all the momentum and Baylor was right where they wanted them.
The wheels slowly began to fall off for the Eagles shortly after, as the Bears proved to be “who we thought they were.”
The team moved away from giving Anderson the ball and began jacking questionable threes. Baylor took advantage of poor shot selection and just like it was the Anderson show in the first half, it became the Pierre Jackson show in the second half. The Baylor guard would finish with 31 points and seven assists, while Austin chipped in with 16 points and nine rebounds.
Anderson was held to only six points in the second half and finished with 25 altogether to go along with six rebounds.
Despite the disappointing finish, the Eagles showed its heart and determination going toe-to-toe with a top 20 ranked opponent. The performance of Anderson can’t be ignored as ACC opponents will have to take notice of what the forward is capable of.
Anderson averaged 11.2 points and 7.4 rebounds as a freshman and at times tonight was playing like a lottery pick. It’s not the first time he’s played like that as last year he scored 21 points and had eight rebounds against the Duke Blue Devils on Feb. 21. Two weeks later he had 22 points and 12 rebounds against the North Carolina State Wolfpack.
Anderson opened the season scoring 29 points and if the Eagles are going to be successful this season, they’ll need him to maintain his high scoring production.