Despite career-best performances from Justin Alston and Kyle Foreman, Boston University suffered a frustrating defeat Wednesday night against UMass Lowell, falling 77-75 in the final seconds.
The River Hawks (4-8) used 21 points from senior forward Tyler Livingston and 20 points from junior guard Jahad Thomas to pick up the victory, including Thomas’ go-ahead layup with eight seconds left.
The Terriers played Wednesday’s game without junior guard Cheddi Mosely, freshman Destin Barnes, and center Blaise Mbargorba who all didn’t make the trip to Lowell.
However, even if with the shorthanded roster, the Terriers controlled the talent disparity by a long shot.
After a back-and- forth first half with both teams playing well on the offensive end, BU took a 38-35 halftime lead thanks to strong interior play from Alston.
The scrappy River Hawk team would not go away even after an 11-4 Terrier run gave the visitors their largest lead of the night at 47-39.
Livingston and Harris knocked down consecutive three-pointers as UML climbed right back into the game.
BU made another run, this time thanks to Tyler Scanlon. The freshman scored eight consecutive points highlighted by two three-pointers, giving the Terriers a 63-57 lead with nine minutes to go.
It seemed like the Terriers were going to seize momentum but three missed layups and turnovers allowed UMass Lowell to come back yet again.
This time around, the River Hawks were here to stay as the home team took a 66-65 lead following a Logan Primerano jumper.
After a Scanlon three-pointer with 25 seconds left tied the game at 75 apiece, Thomas muscled his way into the lane and scored to give UML a 77-75 lead with eight seconds left.
On the ensuing possession, senior Eric Fanning took a wing three-pointer for the win but missed it. The ball was then back-tapped by Scanlon and Fanning chucked up a desperation prayer at the buzzer that went in. After reviewing the shot at the monitor, the referees deemed it no good, giving UMass Lowell the 77-75 win.
Both Fanning and fellow guard Cedric Hankerson struggled combining for just 18 points on 6-22 FG, well below their season combined average of 26 points.
With Mosely unavailable off the bench, Fanning and Hankerson’s inability to play up to their potential was costly.
Sophomore guard Kyle Foreman did have a career night though scoring 7 points, grabbing 7 rebounds, and dishing out a personal best 10 assists. Foreman continuously knifed through the River Hawk defense, dishing out beautiful passes on pick-and-roll sets while also finding open shooters on the perimeter. It was arguably Foreman’s best game in scarlet and white.
A major receptor on the pick-and-roll was Alston. The fifth-year senior scored a career-high 24 points. An array of spectacular passes from Foreman off ball screens led to easy dunks for Alston and Nick Havener who scored at will down low.
However, what dug the Terriers deep was rebounding and second chance points. A smaller and less athletic UML team out rebounded BU 43-39 while outscoring them 19-8 in second chance points and 17-12 in points off turnovers even though both teams had 18 turnovers a piece and the Terriers had 12 steals to UML’s 2.
After defeating a talented New Hampshire team Sunday at Case Gym, it looked like the Terriers were turning a corner. However, a trip up 1-95 to America East cellar dweller UMass Lowell, proved that this team still has a lot of work to do.
The loss capped off a disappointing non-conference schedule which saw BU go just 5-7. The Terriers will take the holiday’s off and return to action on Friday Dec. 30th when defending conference champion Holy Cross comes to Case Gym to kick off Patriot League.