The Clemson Tigers faltered early, surged in the middle, and withstood a late Boston College charge to move on to the ACC Tournament Semifinals with a 90-82 win on Thursday in Brooklyn.
The Tigers struggled to get their sea legs early, starting 2-of-11 from the field, but went on a 15-5 run in the middle of the half including a stretch with eight straight field goals. Clemson ended up shooting 47 percent by the end of the first half.
Clemson grew a lead as high as 16 in the second, but Boston College surged back to within 2 with 5:49 to play. Shelton Mitchell helped put the game out of reach with 14 second-half points.
Gabe DeVoe led the Tigers with 25 points, Mitchell added 21 and Anthony Oliver II, who the Tigers rushed into service after Aamir Simms and David Skara struggled with foul trouble, scored a career-high 9 points.,
Clemson advances to its first ACC Semifinal since 2011, coincidentally beating BC in that season to get to that level. The Tigers lost their next game that year to North Carolina, 92-87 in OT, the furthest they have gone in the ACC Tournament under Head Coach Brad Brownell.
The Tigers’ head coach exited the game proud of his squad for finding their rhythm after a rough start:
Clemson Postgame Press Conference (Brownell, DeVoe and Mitchell)
The Tigers move on to play top-seeded Virginia, who defeated Louisville, 75-58, in the opening game of the tournament for the Cavaliers. Clemson played its worst game of the year at Virginia, totalling a season low for points in a 61-36 loss in Charlottesville.
Virginia Head Coach Tony Bennett
Clemson and Virginia play Friday night at 7 PM on ESPN.