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Clemson outlasts Boston College 90-82 to advance to ACC Tournament Semifinals

Gabe DeVoe scored 25 points to lead the Tigers to a Quarterfinal win over the Eagles.

NCAA Basketball: ACC Conference Tournament-Clemson vs Boston College
Shelton Mitchell got back on track offensively with 21 points in Clemson’s 90-82 win over Boston College.
Nicole Sweet-USA TODAY Sports

Gabe DeVoe scored 25 points and Shelton Mitchell 21 as Clemson held off No. 12 seed Boston College 90-82 to advance to the Semifinals of the ACC Tournament.

The Tigers led by as many as 16 in the second half before the Eagles’ stellar guard tandem of Jerome Robinson and Ky Bowman buried 3-pointer after 3-pointer to eventually trim the lead to just two with 5:46 remaining. But they couldn’t draw any closer, and an AJ Oliver three — his third of the game — gave Clemson the breathing room it needed to pull away against a Boston College team playing its third game in as many days.

The Tigers went 18 for 20 from the free-throw line in the final 6:10 of the game to keep enough distance between themselves and the hard-charging Eagles.

The Eagles took advantage of a rusty Clemson team playing its first game of the tournament and jumped out to an early 12-3 lead before the Tigers got in gear. Clemson went on a 33-10 run over the next 10 minutes to build a 36-22 lead. Boston College trimmed the deficit to just seven at half, but the Tigers continued to pour on the offense after the break to stretch the lead out before the Eagles made their late run.

DeVoe and Mitchell provided nearly half the scoring for Clemson, but the Tigers also got 12 and 10 points from Marcquise Reed and Aamir Simms, respectively, while Elijah Thomas chipped in 8 points and 12 rebounds.

The story of the game, however, was Oliver. The little-used freshman who had scored just 23 points the entire season scored 9 points off the bench on 3-of-3 shooting from beyond the arc, including his massive shot from the corner when Clemson was leaking oil late in the second half.

The Tigers shot 43 percent from three as a team, with 9 of their 12 makes coming in the first half. Mitchell, DeVoe and Simms each made at least two.

Robinson and Bowman combined for 43 points for Boston College, but Clemson held them in check for much of the game before their late barrage. The two shot just 10 of 32 combined from the field.

With the win, Clemson moves on to the Semifinals of the ACC Tournament, where it will face No. 1 seed Virginia at 7 p.m. on Friday night.