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Hanlan carries BC past Florida Atlantic, 82-79

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KEN POWTAK | November 17, 2013 11:25 PM EST | AP

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BOSTON (AP) — Olivier Hanlan scored 15 of his 38 points in the closing 8:53 to lift Boston College to its first win of the season, 82-79 over Florida Atlantic Sunday in the second round of the 2K Sports Classic.

Joe Rahon scored 17 points, and Ryan Anderson had seven with seven boards for the Eagles (1-3).

Pablo Bertone had 27 points, Justin Raffington scored 15 and Dragan Sekelja added 11 for the Owls (1-3), who faced their second straight Atlantic Coast Conference opponent. They lost to No. 4 Duke 97-64 on Friday.

Hanlan had 27 points in the second half to help Boston College avoid blowing a late lead for the second straight game.

Florida Atlantic trailed by seven with 8:53 to go, but scored the next six points — four coming from the free throw line — as they slowly climbed closer.

Like its last game when Boston College blew a late lead against Toledo, the Eagles started to give up easy drives to the basket and saw a 13-point edge sliced to four on Bertone's three-point play with just more than 9 minutes to play.

But Hanlan, last season's unanimous ACC freshman player of the year, scored just enough for them to hang on. He nailed a key 3 before both teams went ice cold from the field.

After his basket with just under 9 minutes left, BC didn't score a point for the next 5:07, breaking the drought on Hanlan's two free throws that made it 68-65 with 3:44 left.

The Owls then closed it to one on Sekelja's basket, but Hanlan was fouled on a drive and completed the three-point play, making it 71-67 with 2:51 to play.

Florida Atlantic closed it to two points twice, but Will Magarity had a put-back and Hanlan added two free throws, helping the Eagles escape with the win.

The Owls made it a one possession game twice in the final minute, but the Owls' Marquan Botley lost control of the ball and they never got a shot off as the horn sounded.

Boston College led by five at halftime and scored 14 of the initial 20 points after intermission, pushing its lead to 53-40 on Hanlan's 3-pointer from the right wing 3:09 into the second half.

Rahon swished a half-court 3-pointer at the buzzer, giving the Eagles a 39-34 edge at the break. He grabbed a defensive rebound in the paint, dribbled up the middle and let the shot go one step before the midcourt line.

After the Owls jumped ahead 9-2 in the game's opening minutes, BC scored the next 10 points. The Eagles pushed their lead to seven, 28-21, on Rahon's driving basket late in half before Florida Atlantic tied it twice in the closing 2 minutes.

BC, which had been outrebounded in each of its first three games and by an average of 12.3 per contest, held an 18-11 advantage in the first half.

Boston College plays No. 19 Connecticut in the tournament's next round at Madison Square Garden in New York on Thursday. Florida Atlantic faces Detroit in its next game on Friday.