Boston School continues roller-coaster season with ACC highway loss to Pittsburgh

School Sports activities

Boston School’s Joe Griffin Jr. hauled in a 38-yard move from Thomas Castellanos earlier than Pittsburgh’s Marquis Williams might knock the ball away. Matt Freed/AP Photograph

It’s been almost unattainable to foretell which model of the Boston School soccer crew will present up on a weekly foundation.

There’s the model that began the season 1-3 and allowed 600 yards in a fourth loss to Virginia Tech final Saturday. There’s additionally the model that ripped off 5 straight wins, every extra gutsy and vital than the final, to improbably grow to be bowl eligible.

Thursday night time on the highway, the Eagles sprinkled in just a little little bit of each variations towards a struggling Pittsburgh crew at Acrisure Stadium. Finally, BC’s inconsistency on either side of the ball proved insurmountable in a 24-16 loss.

The Eagles (6-5, 3-4 Atlantic Coast Convention) settled for discipline objectives and couldn’t cease the Panthers (3-8, 2-5) when it mattered most.

“We have to play higher than that,” BC coach Jeff Hafley mentioned. “That’s a missed alternative.”

After a back-and-forth three-plus quarters, Rodney Hammond Jr. ripped off a 66-yard landing run for Pitt to increase BC’s deficit to eight factors with 4:29 left. The Eagles got here up properly brief of their final gasp to try to tie it, as M.J. Devonshire intercepted Thomas Castellanos’s heave on fourth and 20.

BC has discovered a technique to outlast opponents within the fourth for the majority of the season, however the Panthers acquired the final snigger on this one because the Eagles allowed 400-plus yards as soon as once more.

“We didn’t should win right now,” Castellanos mentioned.

Within the first half, Boston School allowed 4 sacks and dedicated two penalties — one an apparent focusing on name on defensive again Khari Johnson. Hafley mentioned it “appeared like the precise name,” however that he doesn’t imagine Johnson was “purposely making an attempt to focus on the child.” On the flip facet, BC gained the possession battle, and made well timed stops on protection in spurts.

The Eagles transformed on fourth and 1 from their very own 24 to open the sport, which led to a 42-yard discipline objective from Liam Connor halfway by means of the primary quarter. Pittsburgh tied it with a 42-yard discipline objective of its personal from Ben Sauls for a 3-3 rating getting into the second.

Pitt began pressuring Castellanos (13 for 25, 171 yards, landing, 2 interceptions) with extra conviction and compelled BC into common third-and-long conditions. The Panthers acquired the ball again and orchestrated a 15-play, 85-yard drive, beating the Eagles at their very own recreation. Nate Yarnell, making his second profession begin at quarterback, scampered in from 4 yards out in Castellanos type to place Pitt forward, 10-3, with 9:07 left within the half.

The Panthers appeared poised to tack on extra, however Vinny DePalma made a key sort out on fourth and 1 from the BC 18.

Castellanos discovered Dino Tomlin — enjoying in his hometown and in entrance of his father, Steelers coach Mike Tomlin — for a achieve of twenty-two yards, then hit Joe Griffin Jr. for 38 yards. Connor nailed a 45-yard discipline objective with 26 seconds left within the half and, as poorly as that they had performed in stretches, the Eagles solely trailed 10-6.

BC surged in entrance, 13-10, with 8:56 left within the third quarter on a 24-yard landing move from Castellanos to Lewis Bond. An extended evaluate decided that Bond made the catch earlier than the ball got here free.

Pitt answered proper again lower than two minutes later. Yarnell discovered a wide-open Bub Means for a 61-yard TD to offer the Panthers a 17-13 edge.

One large play led to the following, because the setbacks mounted.

“We did some uncharacteristic issues on protection,” Eagles linebacker Kam Arnold mentioned.

The Pittsburgh offense took benefit of a depleted BC secondary lacking Elijah Jones, Cole Batson, and Johnson. 

Kye Robichaux (24 carries, 118 yards) and Tomlin helped the Eagles enter the pink zone, however Castellanos compelled a move into double protection and Phillip O’Brien Jr. swooped in for the Panthers and intercepted it late within the third.

“It’s QB 101, don’t throw the ball late over the center,” Castellanos mentioned. “That one’s on me. Acquired to be higher. I take the blame for that.”

After Sauls missed a 52-yard discipline objective try, BC punter Sam Candotti pinned the Panthers on the 3, then the offense acquired the ball again and Connor nailed a 33-yarder to slice the deficit to 17-16 with 5:19 to go.

Two performs later, Hammond broke free in type.

The Eagles couldn’t tie it, as they dropped a winnable recreation to a lesser opponent. Miami involves Alumni Stadium subsequent Friday to wrap up a BC common season stuffed with promise that has rapidly soured.

“Congrats to Pitt on the victory,” Hafley mentioned. “Very dissatisfied.”