CORAL GABLES, Fla. (AP) — A door swung shut in coach Jim Larranaga's face as he left the arena hallway shortly after the University of Miami's game Wednesday. He avoided injury on a night of close calls for the Hurricanes. They led by 17 points with less than nine minutes left but had to make their final 13 free-throw attempts to hold on and beat Boston College, 78-77.
CORAL GABLES, Fla. (AP) — A door swung shut in coach Jim Larranaga's face as he left the arena hallway shortly after the University of Miami's game Wednesday. He avoided injury on a night of close calls for the Hurricanes.
They led by 17 points with less than nine minutes left but had to make their final 13 free-throw attempts to hold on and beat Boston College, 78-77.
"I was praying the rosary," Larranaga said.
Junior Ja'Quan Newton had a career-high 23 points, including four free throws in the final 27 seconds, and Miami beat Boston College for the 12th time in a row since 2010.
The Hurricanes (13-6, 3-4 Atlantic Coast Conference) snapped a two-game losing streak and won despite going the final five minutes of each half without a basket.
The Eagles (9-12, 2-6) lost for the sixth time in their past seven games.
Boston College's Ky Bowman made 1 of 2 free throws with six seconds left to make it 76-74, but Miami's Bruce Brown sank two free throws with five seconds to go, sealing the victory.
Brown was only 1 for 6 at the line before his final trip there.
"I knew I was going to make the free throws," he said. "I usually make them, but today they weren't falling."
Jerome Robinson made a 3-pointer at the buzzer for the Eagles, who trailed for the final 39 minutes.
Boston College cut the deficit to four points early in the second half before Miami freshmen scored back-to-back breakaway baskets following steals. First came a thunder dunk by Dewan Huell, and then a 360-degree spin and layup by Brown, making it 53-42.
Another steal and layup by Newton gave the Hurricanes their largest lead at 61-44.
"We got deflated during that stretch to let it get to 17," Boston College coach Jim Christian said. "Then we made plays and gave ourselves an opportunity."
The Eagles scored 55 points in the second half after trailing 30-22 at halftime.
"We lost the game in the first half offensively," Christian said. "To win in this league you've got to score."
Robinson had 27 points and six assists. Bowman, coming off a 33-point game against North Carolina, was held to 10 points.
Davon Reed scored 17 points for Miami, and Brown had 12. Newton went 8 for 13 and made all seven of his free-throw attempts.
"He had a big game, and we needed that," Reed said. "He was able to give us a lift."
The Hurricanes scored 12 points during a span of five possessions for a 23-13 lead. Boston College went more than five minutes without a point as its deficit expanded to 28-13.
But Miami went without a point for the final 5:25 of the first half.
Huell scored eight points in 11 minutes, and the 6-foot-11 freshman had his best game defensively, Larranaga said. "It doesn't show up on the stat sheet," the coach said.
Miami won at home for the 22nd time in the past 23 games.
Boston College fell to 0-4 in the league on the road.
Miami plays at home Saturday against No. 9 North Carolina. Eight of the Hurricanes' final 12 regular-season games will be against teams now ranked.
Boston College plays Sunday night at Virginia Tech.
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