Boston College women’s basketball handled Harvard, 86-60, in the home opener of the 2021-2022 season Tuesday afternoon.
The Eagles looked strong to start their season with senior Taylor Soule predictably leading the pack. Soule needed just eight points going into this game to make BC’s 1000-point club. She surpassed the mark by the end of the first quarter, with many in the crowd holding up signs to celebrate. Soule is the 29th player in school history to achieve this milestone.
While Harvard looked competitive early on, the Eagles held a steady lead throughout the first quarter that would only widen as the game continued.
Boston College struggled at first to find a consistent offensive rhythm, but the stellar defense made up for it. The Eagles were forcing air balls and turnovers from Harvard left and right. Not only did they force these mistakes, but they were also able to capitalize on them to give them an early edge.
Despite shots not falling early, the Eagles had great ball movement. BC has always proven to be a solid team under Coach Bernabei-McNamee, and their ability to distribute the ball to everyone on the court allowed them to continue that trend.
BC struggled behind the arc to open the game, going 1-7 during the beginning of the second quarter. Makayla Dickens and JoJo Lacey had something to say about that, and quickly got the Eagles going from deep. BC ended with 33 percent accuracy from three.
By halftime, BC had all but put this game away. Players were excelling at just about everything on the court. Excellent free-throw shooting was led by Kaylah Ivey, who went four-for-four from the line. Soule was scoring as usual but also showed off her playmaking with three assists. A steal from Ally VanTimmeren helped Marnelle Garraud find her game with consecutive points.
The Eagles led 44-29 at the half and kept a lead of at least 15 throughout the second half of the game.
The dangerous senior trio of Soule, Dickens, and Cameron Swartz were three of the Eagles’ high-scorers, joined by fellow senior Garraud. Soule ended with 19 points, while Dickens, Swartz, and Garraud ended with 9, 10, and 13, respectively. Soule, Dickens, and Swartz are tied for the second-highest returning scoring trio in the ACC.
Harvard’s halftime pep talk clearly worked, as they entered the third quarter aggressive and energetic. Unluckily for them, BC was able to respond every time.
BC played a tight game and minimized mistakes. The Eagles had 12 turnovers, compared to the Crimson’s 20. Adding to the matter was a poor shooting night for Harvard. They shot only 33 percent from the field.
BC started to look worn out in the fourth quarter and did not perform to the same degree offensively. However, Harvard looked the same, and BC was able to keep their lead, so it didn’t matter too much in the end.
Boston College (1-0) is set to take on Holy Cross at home this Saturday afternoon at 1 p.m.
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