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Dudley leads BC's escape from Providence

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) -- The Boston College Eagles believe
something special is happening this season, and it's not luck,
either.

Jared Dudley scored 21 points and hit a 3-pointer with 1:20 left
to give Boston College the lead, and the No. 8 Eagles remained
undefeated with a 78-75 victory over Providence on Wednesday night.

Boston College (17-0, 6-0 Big East) is off to its best start in
school history in the regular season and conference play.

"It's just something about us," said Craig Smith, who also
scored 21 points. "We just have a feeling we can't lose right now.
We always go into each game feeling we should win."

Boston College and No. 1 Illinois are the only undefeated teams
left in Division I. No. 2 Duke lost for the first time Wednesday
night, falling 75-66 to Maryland.

Donnie McGrath led Providence (9-9, 0-5) with 17 points,
matching his season high, and made 5 3-pointers. Leading scorer
Ryan Gomes was held to 13 points on 5-for-14 shooting. Providence
has lost five straight.

A 3-pointer by McGrath gave the Friars a 75-71 lead with 3:19
left in the game. BC's Jermaine Watson then hit a floater from the
baseline to draw the Eagles within two. The teams traded turnovers
before Dudley hit his 3-pointer from the left wing to put BC in
front.

"He's exploded this year," Smith said of Dudley, who also led
the Eagles with 12 rebounds and added six assists. "He should be a
name people should be talking about. That shot shows how much poise
he has, and he's willing to take big shots."

Providence's Dwight Brewington missed a 3-pointer with less than
a minute left, but Gomes grabbed the rebound. He whirled in the
lane, but got caught in the air with two defenders on him and
turned the ball over.

Watson made one free throw to give BC a 77-75 lead, but missed
the second to give Providence a chance with 31 seconds left. DeSean
White missed a jumper with 10 seconds remaining, and Dudley hit a
free throw 2 seconds later to give Boston College a three-point
lead.

White said he was looking for Gomes from the moment he touched
the ball.

"By the time I looked down (in the lane), there was a double
(team) on him, and I had to do something," said White, who
finished with eight points. "So, I shot. I make that nine out of
ten times."

After Dudley's free throw, Boston College used a foul to take
some time off the clock, and McGrath's 3-pointer was off the mark
as time expired.

"Our kids fought hard, but I thought BC did a better job in the
last couple of minutes, taking better shots while our kids took
some questionable shots," Providence coach Tim Welsh said.

Providence led 41-38 at the break. A pair of 3-pointers by Gomes
and a basket by Brewington, followed by a 3 from McGrath, gave the
Friars their biggest lead of the game at 55-44 less than 4 minutes
into the second half. But a three-point play by Smith and two
baskets by Sean Marshall got Boston College within four less than 2
minutes later. Neither team led by more than four points in the
final 12 minutes.

"We didn't get in a panic or a frenzy," Watson said. "We just
executed. We didn't get nervous. We knew we were going to come
back."