After the Blue Devils' fifth loss of the season, all of which have come on the road, they will return home looking to extend their regular-season winning streak at Cameron Indoor Stadium to 29 games.

No. 18 Duke welcomes Boston College Thursday night at 7 p.m. after capably handling the Eagles last season in a 67-44 triumph, though the Blue Devils headed to Chapel Hill over the weekend with a history of success that was shockingly snapped in their overtime defeat. And although Boston College represents a less formidable challenger than that revamped North Carolina team, Duke must find consistency in its discipline with the ball—the team’s Achilles' heel in all five of its losses.

“We had 26 turnovers, they had 15,” Blue Devil head coach Joanne P. McCallie said after the loss to the Tar Heels. “That is the game and that is a lack of focus and that needs to be addressed by everybody.”

Duke (15-5, 4-3 in the ACC) averages 15.6 turnovers per game, putting the Blue Devils in the middle of the pack in the conference. But in the team’s five losses, that number jumps to 18.2 turnovers per contest—a figure that would make Duke the second-worst in the ACC. Even more glaring, the Blue Devils' opponents in those contests coughed the ball up just 13 times on average.

Fortunately for Duke, Boston College (6-13, 1-5) has struggled far more with ball control this season. The team’s negative-4.0 turnover margin is by far the worst in the conference.

Ever since the team’s upset loss against Villanova, McCallie emphasized the necessity of improved defensive communication. After holding Virginia to just 48 points Jan. 14, the Blue Devils took steps backward in surrendering 75 points to Virginia Tech and 92 points to the Tar Heels—their two highest totals allowed this season. 

“We didn’t learn too much from Virginia Tech,” McCallie said Sunday. “It was a similar kind of game [against North Carolina] where we gave up penetration and kicks and we didn’t communicate on defense as much.”

The Eagles enter Thursday’s conference shooting just 39.8 percent from the floor, second-worst in the ACC. Despite the offensive woes, Boston College uses a guard-friendly system that has propelled freshman guard Milan Bolden-Morris. Bolden-Morris, the team’s leading scorer with 13.6 points per game, has also proved a potent perimeter shooter and knocks down three triples a game. 

Communication will be important to not only contain Bolden-Morris, but also to dominate the glass—an area in which Duke has perhaps its greatest advantage. With a taller lineup featuring 6-foot-4 Erin Mathias and 6-foot-5 Jade Williams, the Blue Devils should capitalize on the Eagles’ lack of height. 

Following the contest with Boston College, the Blue Devils visit Pittsburgh (9-11, 1-6) Sunday for a 2 p.m. contest, a matchup that compares closely with Thursday’s contest. Although they are a more disciplined team in terms of turnovers than the Eagles and Duke, the Panthers have struggled shooting from the floor and have been consistently outrebounded—Pittsburgh and Boston College are the ACC’s two worst rebounding teams.

The Blue Devils have been unfortunate to play a host of competitive ACC teams in the front half of their schedule, often on the road, including Miami and No. 4 Louisville. The upcoming two contests, while not to be taken likely, could help Duke regain consistency on the floor and on the glass.

Spencer Levy and Conner McLeod contributed reporting.