It was the Langford show at Conte Forum on Sunday as Boston College men’s basketball took on Fairfield. The Eagles’ two leading scorers, half brothers DeMarr Langford Jr. and Makai Ashton-Langford, combined for nearly half the team’s total points.
Though they never comfortably separated themselves from what proved to be a feisty Fairfield squad, the Langford duo still powered BC (3–0) to a 72–64 victory. Ashton-Langford led the team with 17 points while Langford Jr. added 16 points and seven rebounds.
“It’s the fruit of his labor,” BC head coach Earl Grant said of Langford Jr. in his postgame press conference.
The Langfords, however, were certainly not the only stars in Sunday’s matchup. Four of the Eagles’ five starters scored in double figures. T.J. Bickerstaff scored 12 points and picked up seven rebounds, while Quinten Post also poured in nine points off the bench. Guard Jaeden Zackery had a particularly strong evening, with 13 points on 6-of-10 shooting and six assists. The Chipola College transfer made some pivotal plays, including a few key steals and a highlight-worthy alley-oop pass to Langford Jr.
“He has some toughness and some moxie,” Grant said. “He just played winning basketball today. I was really proud of his efforts.”
BC jumped out to a quick lead—one that it would never relinquish—but the Stags would not let the Eagles close the door on them early. Near the end of the second half, Fairfield cut BC’s lead down to two points via an 8–0 run that included a two-minute scoreless stretch from both sides.
That score was as close as they would come, though. The Eagles started the second half with some much-needed energy, expanding the six-point halftime lead to as much as 13 at one point. The Eagles’ tenacious defense ensured the lead remained in their possession. BC’s tight man-to-man defense, which occasionally grew into an intense full-court press, forced 14 turnovers.
Despite BC’s eight-point margin of victory, Fairfield still managed to expose some of the Eagles’ flaws. After only having four in the previous game, the Eagles committed 15 turnovers, leading to several fast-break opportunities for the Stags.
Many of Fairfield’s runs came as a result of sloppy passes and poor ball handling. More concerning, however, were the Eagles’ struggles at the free-throw line. Given 27 opportunities, BC shot only 59 percent.
“If that game was a little bit closer, it might not have went the way we wanted it to,” Ashton-Langford said. “So we got to get right with the free-throws.”
Sunday’s win marked the Eagles’ third straight wire-to-wire victory in what has become an undefeated start to the season.
“We’re in the pursuit of trying to be a good team,” Grant said. “It’s going to be a lot of things that come with that: ups and downs, adversity, good days, [and] bad days.”
Featured Image by Nicole Wei / Heights Staff