Clemson men’s basketball team hung their heads as they left the court Friday afternoon, after No. 22 St. Bonaventure’s 68-65 comeback victory. Clemson controlled the game in the first half, but blew a sixteen point lead in the second half, thanks to red-hot shooting from the Bonnies.
“This was certainly a disappointing loss because I thought we played really hard and really well for 25 to 30 minutes of the game,” said Clemson head coach Brad Brownell in his postgame press conference.
“But we got beat by a team that executed better than we did down the stretch.”
The Tigers led for the first 32 minutes of the game until St. Bonaventure took the lead with 7:54 remaining, holding on to that lead through the final buzzer. St. Bonaventure made ten out of twelve three-point shots in the second half, and the Tigers had no answer.
“The difference was their ability to shoot the ball in the second half,” said Brownell. “We had some shots in the second half that we needed to make, and we didn’t make very many.”
The game ended after a chaotic Clemson possession, where Nick Honor passed up an open layup in favor of what ended up as a desperate three-point airball.
“Nick should’ve just layed it in with 5 seconds to go” said Brownell. “Now we’d get it in, foul them and make them make free throws, but he made the poor choice.”
Sophomore center P.J. Hall led the way for the Tigers, scoring 22 points on 15 shots. He anchored the Clemson defense as well, protecting the rim as the Bonnies converted on 26.4% of their two-point attempts.
Guards Nick Honor and David Collins were the other difference-makers in this game. They were the only other Tigers with double-digit scoring performances.
Point guard Al-Amir Dawes struggled to put the ball in the basket, making two of his eleven shot attempts. He made up for his lack of scoring on the defensive end, tallying a steal and a few crucial stops towards the end of the game.
The Tigers will play West Virginia on Sunday, Nov. 21, in a consolation game.