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Eagles soar, Irish tumble in loss

Matt Lozar | Thursday, February 5, 2004

The backcourt switch is working for Chris Quinn but not quite yet for Chris Thomas.Quinn tied his career high with 25 points while Thomas went 3-of-18 from the field in Notre Dame’s 76-69 loss at Boston College Wednesday night.Notre Dame coach Mike Brey has talked about getting Quinn more time running the point for the Irish to take the pressure of Thomas, giving him the chance to roam free and get more looks.But Thomas struggled for the fourth straight game, scoring 11 points. In those four games, Thomas has scored a combined 45 points, shot 17-of-66 from the field (25.8 percent) and 4-of-26 (15.4 percent) from behind the arc. Wednesday night, Thomas kept shooting despite his lack of scoring. A large number of his misses kept hitting the front of the rim.Meanwhile, Quinn tried to carry the Irish (10-8, 4-4 in the Big East) to a much-needed victory. Brey saw Quinn had the hot hand and started running the offense through the sophomore.With Boston College (13-7, 3-5) ahead 63-54, Quinn nailed 3-pointers on consecutive trips down the court around a Golden Eagles free throw to cut the lead to 64-60. After a Boston College miss, Thomas came down and with the Irish having numbers on the break, decided to pull up and launch a 3-pointer, but missed.Another Boston College free-throw pushed the Eagles lead to 65-60 and a 3-point play by Torrian Jones got the Irish as close as they would get at 65-63 with just over three minutes remaining.Jermaine Watson led Boston College with 22 points. Sophomore Craig Smith added 20 points for the Golden Eagles.Another major offensive problem for the Irish was not getting any production out of forward Torin Francis. Francis scored six points in the first 6:03 of the game, but was held scoreless for the rest of the night. Brey even took Francis out for extended periods of the second half as the Irish couldn’t get Francis back into the offensive flow in the mark.Jordan Cornette found his touch from beyond the arc, scoring 11 points and shooting 3-of-5 on 3-pointers. Cornette, Quinn and Thomas were the only Notre Dame players to reach double figures. Overall, the Irish shot well on 3-pointers, going 10-of-24.

Notes:u Thomas had four assists Wednesday night and now has 584 in his career at Notre Dame. David Rivers is first on the list with 586.u When Smith reached 18 points Wednesday night for Boston College, he reached the 1,000-point mark in his career.