BOSTON (AP) — Troy Flutie threw a touchdown pass in his first career start and Jon Hilliman had a tiebreaking 21-yard scoring run to lift Boston College to a 17-14 win over Northern Illinois on Saturday.
Flutie, the nephew of 1984 Heisman Trophy winner Doug Flutie, a Boston College graduate, completed 5 of 11 passes for 92 yards with one interception. It was his second career TD toss. His uncle had 67 from 1981-84.
Hilliman carried 24 times for 119 yards for the Eagles (3-1).
Joel Bouagnon rushed for 56 yards on 16 attempts, including a 2-yard TD for Northern Illinois (2-2). Drew Hare completed 11 of 25 passes for 81 yards and Aregeros Turner took a kickoff back 86 yards for a TD.
It was just the second ever meeting between the schools.
The Eagles, who entered the week with the nation's top-ranked defense, held NIU to 153 total yards.
The Huskies moved to BC's 35 in the closing two minutes, but their drive stalled with three straight incompletions.
Hilliman broke up the middle untouched and cut toward the left pylon, pushing BC in front 14-7 late in the third quarter.
Colton Litchenberg kicked his first career field goal, a 25-yarder to make it 17-7 with 4:40 to play, but Turner took the ensuing kickoff back for a score.
NIU had moved to BC's 12 midway into the third before Christian Hagan missed right on 29-yard field goal attempt.
After a first quarter filled with punts — eight total, five by the Huskies — and offenses were bogged down by bad passes and two false start penalties by each team, the Eagles jumped ahead 7-0 when Flutie capped a 68-yard drive by rolling right and hitting Charlie Callinan with a 27-yarder early in the second quarter.
The Eagles' backup quarterback tandem of Flutie and Jeff Smith was 0 for 6 before the completion. Flutie threw incomplete on his initial five.
BC's starting QB, Darius Wade, was lost for the season last week when he suffered a broken ankle against then-No. 9 Florida State.
Flutie was picked off on a pass over the middle by Shawun Lurry at NIU's 17. He returned to BC's 4 before he was caught from behind by running back Jon Hillman.
Three plays later, Bouagnon ran up the middle for the game-tying score.
NIU forced five turnovers against No. 1 Ohio State in a 20-13 loss last week.
The Eagles play their first road game of the season next Saturday, facing Duke in an Atlantic Coast Conference matchup.
The Huskies open defense of their Mid-American Conference title at Central Michigan next Saturday.
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