Mon. Jan 21st, 2019

Men’s basketball powers past Boston College

By Matt Bradshaw–

Men’s basketball (15-4, 5-1) defeated Boston College (13-7, 3-4) 77-69 for their fourth straight victory. The Cardinals shot 40 percent and Jordan Nwora scored 15 off the bench to weather a second-half comeback from the Eagles.

Deng Adel led the team with 18 points and 10 rebounds. V. J. King scored 15 and Ray Spalding rebounded 11.

Freshmen Nwora and Malik Williams kept the offensive spark alive for Louisville, finishing with a combined 25 points and 10 rebounds.

“Our freshmen are getting better,” coach David Padgett said. “They’re starting to see the rewards of hard work.”

The Cardinals shot out to a quick 11-5 lead in the first five minutes of the game. Spalding led the run with four points in the paint. Williams added an early 3-pointer.

Boston College answered with a 12-0 run, while Louisville missed seven straight shots. Adel, King and Ryan McMahon each failed to make a field goal in the first half.

Nwora entered the contest with the Cardinals trailing 17-11. His 13 points off the bench helped push Louisville into the lead at the break.

The freshman from Buffalo has seen little time in recent games but made his minutes count against the Eagles.

“Nwora has been practicing and shooting well the past couple days, and it carried over to the game,” Padgett said. “Tonight he helped us get back into the game and win it.”

Williams nailed another 3-pointer and Nwora sunk two free throws to put the Cardinals on top 31-29 at halftime.

Louisville kept a comfortable lead for most of the second half, leading 67-49 with four minutes to play.

Adel and King led the offense in the second half, posting a combined 33 points and 75 percent shooting from the field.

“Adel came alive in the second half,” Padgett said. “He’s trying to make everyone around him better.”

Nailing a string of 3-pointers and free throws, Boston College went on a 20-4 run to bring the score to 71-69 with thirty seconds left.

With the Cardinals in possession, King was fouled and made both chances at the free throw line. Two more fouls led to four more points, clinching a 77-69 victory for Louisville.

“We executed our late-game situations and made our free throws down the stretch,” Padgett said.

U of L has won 11 out of their last 13 games and find themselves second place in the ACC.

“Our schedule gets harder every night,” Padgett said. “We have to go one game at a time.”

They travel to Miami, Florida for a matchup with the Hurricanes on Jan. 24 at 8 p.m.

You can follow Matt Bradshaw on Twitter @bradmatt8

Photos by Taris Smith / The Louisville Cardinal

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