CHESTNUT HILL — Did you really expect anything else?
AJ Dillon put this one away early, and he and quarterback Anthony Brown were out of the game barely a quarter in, as Boston College cruised past Holy Cross Saturday at Alumni Stadium, 62-14.
Dillon rushed for 149 yards and his first three touchdowns on the ground this season on just six carries, and he made it look as easy as that seems. Brown completed both of his passes for 49 yards, and the defense allowed only two first downs — one off a penalty — in the first half.
None of this was a surprise, as BC pasted UMass, 55-21, in the opener, and Holy Cross fell to Colgate, 24-17, last week. The Crusaders are the only Football Championship Subdivision opponent on the schedule, and while they brought a nice contingent of fans, this one was never in doubt.
Now, the 2-0 Eagles prepare for their first Atlantic Coast Conference game of the season at Wake Forest Thursday night. Road games on a short rest are always tough, but the BC should be favored there, too.
"I thought we played well early when it mattered," BC coach Steve Addazio said. "We got guys off the field. We got a very, very short week this week. The goal was as soon as we could get them off, we would get them off. Maybe got them off a little too early. But I wanted to err on that side as opposed to the other. So that's what we did.
"We wish Holy Cross the best. We're off and running towards Wake Forest right now. That's going to be our focus and is our focus right now."
BC took the opening kickoff and immediately asserted its will. On the first play from scrimmage, Dillon went off left tackle for 54 yards to the Holy Cross 22-yard line. Three plays later, he scampered over left end again for a 7-yard score, and BC took a 7-0 lead just 1:14 into the game.
Holy Cross was able to get a first down off a penalty, but soon punted, and BC didn't take long to double its lead. Dillon went over right end, spun out of a tackle, and ran 74 yards for a touchdown. John Tessitore, who came in for Colton Lichtengerg after the first extra point, converted the PAT to make it 14-0 less than five minutes in.
After a Holy Cross three-and-out, the Eagles drove 62 yards in just four plays, including a 20-yard jet sweep by Jeff Smith and a 26-yard completion from Brown to Kobay White. Dillon finished it off by practically walking into the end zone off the right side for a 7-yard score.
"I just said to him, ‘Hey, what a heck of a job you just did. I'm pulling you out of the game (smiling). I want to keep you healthy,’ " Addazio said of his message to Dillon after that touchdown. "We got to get ready for what's ahead. That's what I told him. That was it. He was great."
That was it for Brown and Dillon, and EJ Perry came in at quarterback and led a touchdown drive to start the second quarter, as he hit Ben Glines for a 17-yard score. It marked the first touchdown pass of the Andover native's career, and also the first touchdown of Glines' career.
Just like the first week against UMass, the Eagles ended the first half with a pick-six, as Hamp Cheevers returned an Emmett Clifford throw 81 yards back to the house to give the Eagles a 34-0 halftime lead.
The second half was predictably uneventful. Davon Jones had a 1-yard touchdown run for BC, and teammate Mehdi Al Attrach had an interception shortly after.
Holy Cross linebacker Ryan Brady recovered a fumble on the ensuing Eagles possession for one of the few bright spots for the Crusaders on the day.
The biggest ones came on special teams. In the third quarter, Spencer Gilliam blocked a punt, and Christos Argys returned it 32 yards for a Crusaders touchdown to cut the lead to 48-7 with 1:38 to go in the third quarter. In the fourth, Macklin Kortebein swatted another BC punt, and Gilliam recovered it in the end zone.
One of the other positives for Holy Cross was running back Domenic Cozier. The Milford native and Milton Academy alum rushed for 43 yards on 12 carries, effectively working the edge at times.
Perry added a pretty, 33-yard touchdown pass to sophomore CJ Lewis in the third quarter, the first career touchdown for the wide receiver. Perry completed 9-of-12 passes for 95 yards.
Matt McDonald came in for Perry and threw a 35-yard touchdown to tight end Hunter Long to begin the fourth quarter, the first career scoring efforts for both McDonald and Long. McDonald added a 65-yard touchdown pass to Noah Jordan-Williams, his first career receiving score.
Rounding out an efficient day for the BC quarterbacks, McDonald completed 5-of-6 passes for 107 yards.
But that about covered it, as there was no drama here.
Onto the Demon Deacons.
"My mindset is to be 1-0 next week and 3-0. Get our first conference win," Dillon said. "Last year Wake Forest came here and they beat us, obviously that doesn’t really sit well with anybody on our team. I’m just focused and ready to get back out here tomorrow and watch some film and figure out what we did, what we can work on and how we can get better from this game and move forward. I know our coaches have a great plan in place even with the short week. It’s going to be a quick turnaround but I know we’re up to it."