The varsity basketball team, like the famed one-horse shay, ran and ran and then finally came apart last night at the Blockhouse to lose, 76 to 63, to Boston College. The Crimson played a sound, commendable game; it just could not withstand the pressure that B.C. applied for the entire 40 minutes.
The home team led for most of the game, but it lost its advantage with seven minutes to play in the last quarter and never once regained it. The last minutes of the game were a bad memory for the team and the fans, but the explanation is simple--Harvard was tired and could net run with the swift Eagle quintet.
The Eagles led for the first quarter and part of the second, mainly because they were having success in their set shots from outside the Crimson's zone defense. Suddenly the Crimson solved one of the game's elementary problems --how to put the ball through the hoop--and began to catch up fast.
The Crimson caught up and kept on going. Some fine push shots by Bill Hickey and some amazing jump shots by Ed Blodnick pulled the Crimson even at 33-all. A foul by Gerry Murphy and two-pointers by Dick Lionette and Bill Dennis gave the team a 38 to 33 half time lead.
Talk of an upset over the 20th-ranked team in the nation ran high at halftime among Crimson reforms and during the third quarter it was Dennis who kept their hopes high. Dennis, who never plays a bad game, played a great one as he plugged in five field goals and a foul and picked off innumerable rebounds during a tense ten minutes. At one time in the quarter behind by nine points, the Eagles closed strong to finish at a 55 to 49 disadvantage.
But it is the last quarter that counts, and it was in the last quarter that B.C. showed why it has now won six straight games. The Eagles, who had starters in last year's 76 to 48 win over Harvard sitting on the bench, applied a full-court press. With a wealth of experienced reserves, B.C. coach General Al McClellan could tell his men to run and they could respond.
The Crimson was tired. Dennis had played the entire game as had Murphy. Blodnick and Lionette had had little rest--they were in no condition to keep up with B.C.'s lanky six six center, Tony Daukas, who led his team with 20 points. For the first seven and a half minutes of the last quarter the Crimson was unable to score a single field goal. Shots went astray and passes went all over the court. The team just didn't have it, Boston College did.