Florida State Men's Basketball - 2017-18 Year In Review

Florida State Men's Basketball - 2017-18 Year In Review

Coaching Staff
Leonard Hamilton, Head Coach
Michael Bradley, Strength and Conditioning
Dennis Gates, Assistant Coach
Stan Jones, Associate Head Coach
Jacob Ridenhour, Director of Operations
Charlton Young, Assistant Coach

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Click here to see individual mug shots
2017-18 FSU Basketball Media Guide


2018 Florida State Signees/Newcomers

Raiquan Gray, 6-8, 250, F, Fort Lauderdale - “Raiquan Gray is a versatile forward who is equally at ease leading the fast break as he is banging down low and doing the dirty work on the glass. He is a capable scorer from all three levels and can be a matchup nightmare for opposing teams thanks to his size and passing abilities. On the defensive side of the ball, Gray is a solid shot blocker due to his long arms and timing,” said Sterling Thomas of The Runner Sports. ON GRAY: A very versatile player around the basket on both ends of the court…is a playmaker who handles the basketball and makes shots on offense and is a space eater who blocks shots and rebounds well on defense…his game is often compared to that of Draymond Green of the Golden State Warriors…can effectively play both the small and power forward positions…ranked as the 20th best power forward in the country according to ESPN…ranked the 5th best in the state of Florida according to ESPN…helped lead Dillard to consecutive state championship titles in 2016 and 2017 as a junior and a senior…totaled a double double of 16 points and 11 rebounds in Dillard’s 2017 Class 7A State championship clinching 75-53 win over Edgewater…played in the 23rd annual Dade-Broward All-Star game in 2017…a member of the Florida Vipers AAU team with fellow FSU teammate Anthony Polite…averaged 10.2 points, 6.6 rebounds and 2.4 assists while playing on the Under Armour circuit during the summer prior to his senior season…helped the Vipors to the Final Four of the Las Vegas Feb 48 Tournament in Las Vegas. AT DILLARD: Graduated from Dillard High School in 2017…as a senior he led Dillard to a 28-5 record overall while averaging a double-double of 16 points and 12 rebounds…helped the Panthers finish 28-4 and nationally ranked 20th by MaxPreps…was recognized by MaxPreps as a part of the Tour of Champions nationally ranked teams…was selected as a member of the 2016 and 2017 All-Broward County First-Team by the Miami Herald…Dillard was ranked 20th nationally in the final high school ranking by Max Preps…scored 21 points to lead Dillard past St. Raymond (Bronx, N.Y.) in the Kruel Classic Elite Championship…was named to the All-Tournament team in the event as he led Dillard to the team championship…averaged 16.0 points, 11.0 rebounds and 4.0 assists as a junior…helped Dillard to a 28-5 record and the Class 6A state title as a junior in 2016…totaled nine points and 10 rebounds in the championship game victory over Largo High School for the sixth championship in school history…earned All-State Class 6A First Team honors as a junior. PERSONAL: Born April 7, 1999…Raiquan is the son of Valerie Gray…Chose Florida State and Leonard Hamilton over Baylor, Miami, Florida, Clemson, Virginia Tech, Maryland and Memphis.

Ike Obiagu, 7-0, 240, C, Abuja, Nigeria - PRONOUNCED: Ee-K-chu-ku O-bee-ah-gu “Ikechukwu Obiagu is super mobile and can get up and down the floor with ease. He rebounds outside of his area very well. He’s also a game changing shot blocker. He will finish anything you put around the rim whether it be a lob or a put back,” said the recruiting experts of SB Nation… An incredibly long and athletic player who is considered to be one of the top shot blockers in the incoming class of high school athletes…has an incredible ability to utilize his length, athleticism and his timing as well as any shot blockers in the country…has the ability to become a dominant scorer in the paint…the No. 4 ranked center and the No. 47 overall prep prospect in the Class of 2017 by 247Sports…arguably the best shot blocker in the Class of 2017 and is often compared to four-time NBA Defensive Player of the Year Dikembe Mutombo – the uncle of teammate Mfiondu Kabegnele…one of the highest regarded centers in this year’s recruiting class…ranked as the 56th best recruit in the nation and third best at his position in the nation by ESPN.com…consensus top 10 recruit out of the state of Georgia… joins RaiQuan Gray, Wyatt Wilkes, Anthony Polite, and Bryan Trimble as a part of this 2016-2017 nationally ranked recruiting class…one of the most highly sought after members of the class of 2017…selected to play at the Nike Hoops Summit for the World team where he would finish with three rebounds and two blocks…participated in Georgia Stars 16U Peach Jam Championship team in 2015. AT GREENFOREST ACADEMY: Graduated from Greenforest Christian Academy in 2017…earned All-State First Team Honors by the Atlanta Journal Constitution for Class A in the state of Georgia as a senior in 2017…a four-year member of the Eagles’ varsity…totaled 330 blocked shots during his final two seasons at Greenforest (201 as a senior and 129 as a junior)…averaged 8.4 points, 9.5 rebounds and 7.2 blocked shots as a senior…201 blocked shots as a senior with 11 coming in back to back games against Our Lady of Mercy and Bishop McNamara and 10 coming against Memphis East, Holy Innocents Episcopal and St. Francis…posted two triple-doubles and eight double-doubles during his senior year at Greenforest…the Eagles’ Player of the Game six times as a senior…highest scoring game as he posted 17 points against Mountain View… season high for rebounds was 14, which he accomplished on three separate occasions over his senior year…14 rebounds came against Holy Spirit Prep, North Clayton and Dre Charter School…his best overall game he scored 11 points, pulled down 12 rebounds and blocked 11 shots against Our Lady of Mercy…posted 266 rebounds and 201 blocks in total during his senior year… led his high school men’s basketball team to the 2017 class A-Private State Championship where they would be victorious…averaged 8.1 points, 7.8 rebounds, and 6.8 blocked shots in 19 games as a junior at Greenforest…led Greenforest to a 27-5 record, ranking as the seventh best boy’s high school basketball team in the state of Georgia as a junior…season high 17 points came against Drew Charter School…a double-double of 17 points and a season-high 16 rebounds against Drew…three double-doubles as a junior…totaled an incredible 20 blocked shots in Greenforest’s victory over Our Lady of Mercy on February 23, 2016…at least six blocked shots in 15 of the 19 games he played in as a junior…led the Eagles to the Class A Private School state championship and a 31-2 record as a junior in 2016…played in the 2017 Nike Hoop Summit – the second consecutive Seminole (Jonathan Isaac in 2016) to play in the event…totaled three rebounds and two blocked shots while playing for the World Team…a member of the Georgia Stars AAU team…blocked an incredible 11 shots and pulled down nine rebounds in a Stars’ victory in the 2016 Peach Jam. PERSONAL: Born on June 27, 1998…lives with a guardian while his parents remain in his native home of Nigeria…has a wingspan of 7-4…participated in the Nike Basketball Academy in 2015…selected Florida State over Baylor, Florida, Maryland, Arizona, Butler, NC State, Georgia Tech and Long Beach State.

Anthony Polite, 6-6, 210, G, Lugano, Switzerland - “Anthony Polite is a player that all his teammates are going to love playing with. I don’t think you can say that about everybody. I guarantee within a couple weeks, if they play a pickup game and two guys are captains, Anthony will be the first pick,” said St. Andrew’s Head Coach John O’Connell. ON POLITE: Can effectively play all three perimeter positions…with his great height on the perimeter he has great vision when leading a team and is at his best when the ball is in his hands…is tough with excellent playmaking skills…left-handed…a hard-nose, tough wing who can score, rebound and play defense…ranked as the 40th best shooting guard in the country and the 18th best in the state of Florida according to 247 sports…was named the 2016 Small School Player of the Year in Palm Beach County by the Palm Beach Post…played for the Florida Vipers Under Armour team that went to the semifinals of the Las Vegas 48 tournament…averaged 12 points, six rebounds and two assists over four games while shooting 51% for the Vipers…played with fellow FSU teammate Raiquan Gray…regarded as a very effective scorer that is efficient from inside and outside the arc. AT ST. ANDREW'S CHRISTIAN SCHOOL:Graduated from St. Andrew’s Christian School in 2017… averaged a double-double of 19.1 points and 11.7 rebounds to go along with 4.6 assists and 2.4 steals in 26 games while leading St. Andrew’s to a regional semifinal…scored 24 points in the semifinal loss…in the quarterfinals made a late layup to give St. Andrew’s the lead and the victory…finished his high school career with 1545 points…shot an astounding .590 percent from the field and .390 percent from the 3-point line…named the 2017 All-Palm Beach 6A-1A Basketball Player of the Year as he helped St. Andrew’s win a district title…St. Andrew’s finished the season with a 25-3 record…served as the team captain at St. Andrew’s his senior season…led St. Andrew’s to a 51-5 record during his junior and senior seasons…as a junior averaged 22.0 points, 8.0 rebounds and 3.0 steals per game…led St. Andrew’s to the 4A regional championship game and a 26-2 record…named to the Class 4A-1A All-State First-Team…averaged 18.6 points and 6.5 rebounds per game as a sophomore in leading St. Andrew’s to an 18-8 season…led his team to the district championship game…led St. Andrew’s to a 14-7 record during his freshman season…St. Andrew’s finished the regular season with a 21-1 record, their only loss coming to Oxbridge Academy at the MLK classic…the Scots topped Coral Springs Charter to win their first district title and defeated Calvary Christian in the regional quarterfinals…led St. Andrew’s to a victory over Chaminade to send St. Andrew’s to the district championship game…a member of the St. Andrew’s varsity all four years of high school…named as the St. Andrew’s Player of the Year as both a junior and senior…named the St. Andrew’s Player of the Game 18 times as both a junior and senior. PERSONAL: Born June 21, 1997…Anthony is the son of Michael Polite…his father, Michael Polite, played for the Seminoles in 1988-91 and in 99 games averaged 10.8 points and 6.8 rebounds…born in Switzerland in 1997 while his father was playing professionally…moved to the United States when he was 15 for his freshman season…played soccer for four years before deciding to concentrate on basketball…selected Florida State over Duke, Miami, Pitt, Virginia Tech and Southern Cal.

MJ Walker, 6-5, 205, G, Jonesboro, GA - “M.J. Walker is an athletic 6’5” two-way wing, who is an explosive scorer at all three levels. When he does penetrate or operate in transition, he’s easily able to finish through contact and is an excellent free throw shooter. He’s got good size for a shooting guard and a college-ready body. Walker has a high basketball IQ and is a very effective passer for a wing. Defensively, he tries to impose his relatively strong physique on his man. He has active hands, which he uses to generate steals in the passing lanes. Walker is very good for a wing at controlling the defensive glass,” said Andrew Slater of 247sports. 2017 McDonald’s All-American who averaged 27.8 points and 6.5 rebounds as a senior at Jonesboro (Ga.) high school…the 12th McDonald’s All-American to sign with Florida State and the fifth (Walker, Dwayne Bacon (2015), Michael Snaer (2009), Chris Singleton (2008) and Von Wafer (2003) to sign with Seminole head coach Leonard Hamilton and his staff… ranked as the No. 8 prep prospect by ESPN.com…the No. 1 ranked shooting guard as a high school senior in 2017…the nation’s 22nd best prep player according to 247Sports.com…ranked as the No. 28 overall player and the No. 4 shooting guard in the class of 2017 by ScoutHoops…one of the most coveted shooting guards in America as a prep senior…possesses the ability to pull up and shoot and creates his own shot with ease…plays under control and is very fluid in his movements…competed in the 2017 McDonald’s All-American game, the Nike Hoops Summit and the Allen Iverson Roundball Classic following his senior season at Jonesboro…a featured player as a member of the winning West squad at the McDonald’s All-American game where he totaled four rebounds and four assists…presented with the Jack Daly Sportsmanship Award – given to the player who exhibits the best sportsmanship during the week of the McDonald’s All-Star game…a member of the 2017 U.S. Junior Select Team at the Nike Hoop Summit where he scored two points and added one assist in helping the U.S. Select team to a 98-87 victory at the Moda Center in Portland, Oregon…helped the United States win a gold medal at the FIBA Americas U18 Championship during the Summer of 2016…the event was played in Valdivia, Chile…his decision to attend Florida State moved the Seminoles’ recruiting class into the nation’s top 12 and into the ACC’s top four according to Rivals.com…participated in the Steph Curry SC30 Select Camp prior to his junior season…credits Curry with helping him understand the game better…his athleticism helped him earn football scholarship offers from Clemson, Miami (Fla.) and Michigan…was an outstanding dual threat athlete as a free safety and as a wide receiver…earned football scholarship offers despite finishing his football career following his sophomore season. AT JONESBORO: Graduated from Jonesboro High School in 2017…named the 6A Player of the Year in the State of Georgia by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution as he averaged 27.8 points, 6.5 rebounds and 2.4 assists as a senior…led Jonesboro to a 23-6 overall record as a senior…named to the USA Today All-USA Second-Team in 2016…led Jonesboro to its first-ever state championship as a freshman and as a sophomore…led Jonesboro back to the state championship game as a junior…scored a junior season-high 39 points against Bishop Gorman in leading Jonesboro to the state championship title game for the third consecutive season…averaged 22.3 points, 5.6 rebounds and 3.4 assists per game as a junior…named the Player of the Year as a sophomore by the Clayton Daily News in leading Jonesboro to the Class 4A State Championship for the second consecutive season…averaged 17.3 pints as a sophomore…scored 30 points in Jonesboro’s state championship semifinal win over Liberty County and scored 22 points in the Cardinals’ state title-clinching win over Carrollton…a member of the Atlanta Xpress on the Under Armour AAU circuit…showcased his ability in Indianapolis prior to his senior season as he scored 31 points against New Heights and totaled 26 against the Earl Watson elite…attended the same high school as former Florida State star Toney Douglas who earned All-ACC First Team Honors and was named the ACC Defensive Player of the Year in 2009. PERSONAL: Born March 28, 1998…M.J. is the son of Jackie and James Walker…Jackie was a starter at Hampton from 1985-88 …the Pirates had earned a record of 119-13 during her career, capped by a 33-1 national championship winning team in 1988…James played at Norfolk State from 1986-89 where he led the Spartans to a 101-22 record and twice reached the Elite 8 of the NCAA Division II Tournament…a sister, Amoni, plays basketball at Miles College in Alabama….lists LeBron James as his favorite athlete…selected Florida State over Georgia Tech, Ohio State, UCLA, Virginia Tech and NC State.

Wyatt Wilkes, 6-8, 210, F, Orlando - “The 6-foot-7 forward possesses a unique game. He uses angles, ball fakes, pace and athleticism to get where he wants off the dribble. His shot is probably his best attribute as he’s capable of hitting contested jumpers, either spotting up or off the bounce,” said Dan McDonald of Rivals. A very versatile player and a strong perimeter defender as he often guards the opponents’ point guard…ranked as the nation’s 25th best power forward by 247sports…ranked as the 30th best power forward in the country according to ESPN.com…ranked the 16th best in the state of Florida according to 247 sports…Future150.com as he ranked as the 20th best small forward in the nation and the sixth best all-around player in the state of Florida…participated in the Nike Elite 100 camp during the summer prior to his junior season…played for the Southeast Elite AAU team in 2015 that won the 17-U Platinum division title…led CP25 Southeastern Elite to the team championship at the 2016 U17 Bob Gibbons Tournament of Champions,…averaged 15.0 points, 7.0 rebounds and 4.0 assists in the Nike Memorial Day Classic in 2016 to lead CP25. AT WINTER PARK: Graduated from Winter Park High School in 2017…earned All-State Class 8A Second Team honors as a senior…All-Area First Team selection in 2015 and 2016 by the Orlando Sentinel…averaged 17.4 points, 9.5 rebounds and 4.5 assists per game in his senior season… led Winter Park to the 8A state Championship Final Four with a 20-11 record…scored in double figures in 17 of his 31 games as a senior while scoring a season high 31 points in a win over Timber Creek…six double-doubles as a senior…totaled 28 points and eight rebounds against Windermere Prep as a senior…a double-double of 26 points and 10 rebounds came in a win over Clearwater…a double-double of 31 points and 12 rebounds came in a victory over Timber Creek…a double-double of 14 points and 10 rebounds in a win over Apopka…a fourth double-double of 13 points and 11 rebounds came in a win over Dr. Phillips…totaled 27 points in a win over Lake Nona…was a freshman starter for the Wildcats on their 2013-14 state championship team…earned a spot as a starter on the Winter Park varsity as a freshman and averaged in double figures (12.9 ppg in 114 career games) for his career…averaged 7.6 points as a freshman, 13.1 points as a sophomore, a career-high 17.1 points as a junior (totaled eight double-doubles as a junior) and 14.5 points as a senior…averaged 7.1 rebounds during his high school career with a career-high 8.5 rebounds per game coming during his junior season…totaled 1,474 points and 812 rebounds per game as a prep star. PERSONAL: Born April 9, 1999…Wyatt is the son of Kim and Glenn Wilkes. Jr.…his father is the legendary head women’s basketball coach at Rollins (Fla.) College…he is in his 32nd season at Rollins and is the winningest coach in Sunshine State Conference history…his mother was a four-time All-American basketball star at Rollins…is the grandson of National Basketball Hall of Famer and long-time Stetson coach Glenn Wilkes Sr. …the nephew of former Seminole assistant coach Rob Wilkes (2000-02)…received more than 20 Division I scholarship offers…selected Florida State over Duke, Kansas, Florida, Clemson, Georgia, Georgia Tech and Missouri.


2018 Roster - By Name

L
T                                                  PY
R No Name                  Pos     Hgt   Wgt  Cl   Ltr  Hometown (Prior School)
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
  40 Brandon Allen         F       6-6   209  Sr-R ***  Milton (Milton)
  11 Braian Angola         G       6-6   195  Sr   *    Casanare, Colombia (Findlay College Prep/North Idaho College)
   0 Phil Cofer            F       6-8   128  Sr   ***  Fayetteville, GA (Whitewater)
   3 Trent Forrest         G       6-5   215  So   *    Chipley (Chipley)
   1 Raiquan Gray          F       6-8   250  Fr        Fort Lauderdale (Dillard)
  25 Mfiondu Kabengele     F       6-9   235  Fr-R      Burlington, Ontario, Canada (Don Bosco Prep)
  21 Christ Koumadje       C       7-4   233  Jr   **   N'Djamena, Chad (Montverde Academy)
  20 Travis Light          G       6-5   165  Fr-R      Vienna, VA (Montverde Academy)
  15 Justin Lindner        G       6-0   175  So        Memphis, TN (Christian Brothers)
  14 Terance Mann          G       6-6   204  Jr   **   Lowell, MA (Tilton School)
  33 Will Miles            F       6-6   220  Fr-R      Orlando (Trinity Prep)
  12 Ike Obiagu            C       7-0   240  Fr        Abuja, Nigeria (Greenforest Christian Academy)
  13 Anthony Polite        G       6-6   210  Fr        Lugano, Switzerland (Saint Andrews)
  35 Harrison Prieto       F       6-8   214  So        Mandeville, LA (Saint Paul's)
   5 PJ Savoy              G       6-4   200  Jr   *    Las Vegas, NV (Las Vegas/Sheridan College)
   2 CJ Walker             G       6-1   195  So   *    Indianapolis, IN (Arsenal Technical)
  23 MJ Walker             G       6-5   205  Fr        Jonesboro, GA (Jonesboro)
  31 Wyatt Wilkes          F       6-8   210  Fr        Orlando (Winter Park)

2018 Roster - By Number

L
T                                                  PY
R No Name                  Pos     Hgt   Wgt  Cl   Ltr  Hometown (Prior School)
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
   0 Phil Cofer            F       6-8   128  Sr   ***  Fayetteville, GA (Whitewater)
   1 Raiquan Gray          F       6-8   250  Fr        Fort Lauderdale (Dillard)
   2 CJ Walker             G       6-1   195  So   *    Indianapolis, IN (Arsenal Technical)
   3 Trent Forrest         G       6-5   215  So   *    Chipley (Chipley)
   5 PJ Savoy              G       6-4   200  Jr   *    Las Vegas, NV (Las Vegas/Sheridan College)
  11 Braian Angola         G       6-6   195  Sr   *    Casanare, Colombia (Findlay College Prep/North Idaho College)
  12 Ike Obiagu            C       7-0   240  Fr        Abuja, Nigeria (Greenforest Christian Academy)
  13 Anthony Polite        G       6-6   210  Fr        Lugano, Switzerland (Saint Andrews)
  14 Terance Mann          G       6-6   204  Jr   **   Lowell, MA (Tilton School)
  15 Justin Lindner        G       6-0   175  So        Memphis, TN (Christian Brothers)
  20 Travis Light          G       6-5   165  Fr-R      Vienna, VA (Montverde Academy)
  21 Christ Koumadje       C       7-4   233  Jr   **   N'Djamena, Chad (Montverde Academy)
  23 MJ Walker             G       6-5   205  Fr        Jonesboro, GA (Jonesboro)
  25 Mfiondu Kabengele     F       6-9   235  Fr-R      Burlington, Ontario, Canada (Don Bosco Prep)
  31 Wyatt Wilkes          F       6-8   210  Fr        Orlando (Winter Park)
  33 Will Miles            F       6-6   220  Fr-R      Orlando (Trinity Prep)
  35 Harrison Prieto       F       6-8   214  So        Mandeville, LA (Saint Paul's)
  40 Brandon Allen         F       6-6   209  Sr-R ***  Milton (Milton)

3/22/2017 - Dwayne Bacon declared for the NBA draft.
3/23/2017 - Xavier Rathan-Mayes declared for the NBA draft.
3/24/2017 - Jonathan Isaac declared for the NBA draft.

2017-18 Noles in the Pros

Name                     No      Pos                Team
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Dwayne Bacon              7      G-F                Charlotte Hornets
Malik Beasley            25      G                  Denver Nuggets
Jonathan Isaac            1      F                  Orlando Magic
Okaro White              15      F                  Miami Heat

Noles in the Pros -  4

2018 Schedule and Results

             
GAME DAY
OPP EOY
DATE
REF
LOC
OPPONENT
SCORE
NCAA
NIT
FSU
AP
FSU
USA
OPP
AP
OPP
USA
AP
UPI
11/14
Ref
H
GEORGE WASHINGTON
W 87-67
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
11/17
Ref
N
FORDHAM
Jamaica Classic, Montego Bay, Jamaica
W 67-43
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
11/19
Ref
N
COLORADO STATE
Jamaica Classic, Montego Bay, Jamaica
W 90-73
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
11/22
Ref
H
KENNESAW STATE
W 98-79
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
11/24
Ref
H
CITADEL
W 113-78
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
11/28
Ref
A
RUTGERS
ACC/Big 10 Challenge
W 78-73
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
12/04
Ref
A
FLORIDA
W 83-66
 
 
 
 
5
5
 
 
12/06
Ref
H
LOYOLA-MARYLAND
W 96-71
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
12/10
Ref
N
TULANE
Tampa, Fl
W 72-53
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
12/16
Ref
N
OKLAHOMA STATE
Orange Bowl Classic, Sunrise, Fl
L 70-71
 
 
19
19
 
 
 
 
12/18
Ref
H
CHARLESTON SOUTHERN
W 69-58
 
 
24
25
 
 
 
 
12/21
Ref
H
SOUTHERN MISSISSIPPI
W 98-45
 
 
24
25
 
 
 
 
12/30
Ref
A
DUKE
L 93-100
 
 
24
25
4
3
12
10
01/03
Ref
H
NORTH CAROLINA
W 81-80
 
 
24
 
12
11
14
16
01/07
Ref
A
MIAMI
L 74-80
 
 
24
 
15
17
 
 
01/10
Ref
H
LOUISVILLE
L 69-73
 
 
23
 
 
 
 
 
01/13
Ref
H
SYRACUSE
2OT
W 101-90
 
 
23
 
 
 
 
 
01/15
Ref
A
BOSTON COLLEGE
L 75-81
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
01/20
Ref
A
VIRGINIA TECH
W 91-82
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
01/24
Ref
H
GEORGIA TECH
W 88-77
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
01/27
Ref
H
MIAMI
W 103-94
 
 
 
 
 
24
 
 
01/31
Ref
A
WAKE FOREST
L 72-76
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
02/03
Ref
A
LOUISVILLE
W 80-76
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
02/07
Ref
H
VIRGINIA
L 55-59
 
 
 
 
2
2
1
3
02/10
Ref
A
NOTRE DAME
L 69-84
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
02/14
Ref
H
CLEMSON
OT
W 81-79
 
 
 
 
11
12
11
12
02/18
Ref
H
PITTSBURGH
W 88-75
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
02/25
 
A
NORTH CAROLINA STATE  
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
02/28
 
A
CLEMSON  
 
 
 
 
 
 
11
12
03/03
 
H
BOSTON COLLEGE  
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Conference games in bold

                Overall   Home    Away   Neutral
------------------------------------------------
FSU RECORD IS    19- 8   12- 2    4- 5    3- 1
VS ACC            8- 7    6- 2    2- 5    0- 0
AGAINST TOP 25    4- 3    3- 1    1- 2    0- 0

2017-18 - 30 Point Club

Name Date Opponent FGM FGA 3FGM 3FGA FTM FTA PTS --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Terance Mann 01/24/2018 GEORGIA TECH 10 13 0 1 10 12 30

2017-18 - 15 Rebound Club

Name Date Opponent O-REB D-REB TOTAL ------------------------------------------------------------------------------ None

2017-18 - 10 Assist Club

Name Date Opponent Assists ------------------------------------------------------------------ Trent Forrest 12/21/2017 SOUTHERN MISSISSIPPI 12

2017-18 EOY Stats

                                                --3 Point---                            ----REBOUNDS-----
Name                 GP GS  Min  FGM  FGA  PCT  FGM FGA  PCT  FTM FTA  PCT  PTS  AVG    OFF DEF  TOT  AVG  PF DQ  AST   TO  BLK  STL
====================================================================================================================================
Terance Mann         26 25  778  143  247 .579   11  40 .275   68  98 .694  365 14.0     56  95  151  5.8  42  0   70   50    7   23
Phil Cofer           27 27  804  138  274 .504   36  94 .383   49  72 .681  361 13.4     45 101  146  5.4  32  0   22   30    6   12
Braian Angola        27 23  736  107  260 .412   54 145 .372   76  91 .835  344 12.7     27  81  108  4.0  62  0   80   60    5   39
CJ Walker            27 27  695   83  193 .430   35  97 .361   48  67 .716  249  9.2      6  73   79  2.9  70  3   80   47    4   29
MJ Walker            27  1  554   77  187 .412   41 106 .387   35  46 .761  230  8.5      6  39   45  1.7  70  5   32   31    4   17
Mfiondu Kabengele    26  0  375   64  132 .485    9  21 .429   47  71 .662  184  7.1     54  71  125  4.8  56  1    8   27   19   13
Trent Forrest        26  1  637   57  120 .475    2  10 .200   55  79 .696  171  6.6     35  86  121  4.7  41  1   98   43    8   35
Christ Koumadje      16 13  293   56   87 .644    0   0 .000   16  30 .533  128  8.0     32  46   78  4.9  44  1    3   15   27    0
PJ Savoy             19  4  205   37  100 .370   31  85 .365   10  14 .714  115  6.1      3  22   25  1.3  18  0   14   11    0    5
Ike Obiagu           26 14  271   25   47 .532    0   0 .000   11  34 .324   61  2.3     26  37   63  2.4  40  0    1   18   45    6
Brandon Allen        19  0   80    8   17 .471    3  11 .273    0   0 .000   19  1.0      1   6    7  0.4  10  0    6    5    0    3
Travis Light          3  0    6    2    5 .400    2   5 .400    0   0 .000    6  2.0      0   1    1  0.3   0  0    0    0    0    0
Wyatt Wilkes          6  0   44    2    9 .222    0   7 .000    0   1 .000    4  0.7      2   7    9  1.5   2  0    3    5    2    1
Harrison Prieto       2  0    5    1    2 .500    0   0 .000    0   0 .000    2  1.0      0   0    0  0.0   0  0    1    0    0    0
Anthony Polite        1  0    4    0    0 .000    0   0 .000    0   0 .000    0  0.0      0   1    1  1.0   0  0    1    1    0    1
Justin Lindner        3  0    7    0    1 .000    0   0 .000    0   0 .000    0  0.0      0   1    1  0.3   1  0    2    2    0    0
Will Miles            3  0    6    0    2 .000    0   2 .000    0   0 .000    0  0.0      0   1    1  0.3   1  0    0    0    0    0
Team                               1                                          2          34  49   83        1            3
====================================================================================================================================
FSU                  27          801 1683 .476  224 623 .360  415 603 .688 2241 83.0    327 717 1044 38.7 490 11  421  348  127  184
Opp                  27          695 1632 .426  218 631 .345  375 517 .725 1983 73.4    306 628  934 34.6 512 17  338  390   75  161

2017-18 Game Stats

FLORIDA STATE 87, GEORGE WASHINGTON 67
11/14/2017, TALLAHASSEE, FL

From the FSU Website, seminoles.com.

Veterans, Newcomers Shine As FSU Men Overwhelm George Washington.

by Tim Linafelt, Senior Writer

TALLAHASSEE, FL – The new-look Florida State men’s basketball team looks just fine.

Terance Mann took to his new role as a veteran leader with 17 points and eight rebounds, and the Seminoles had five players score in double-figures on the way to an 87-67, season-opening victory over George Washington in front of 7,455 fans at the Tucker Center.

Christ Koumadje, the 7-foot-4 center, added a career-high 14 points, seven rebounds and five blocks, and senior Phil Cofer scored 15 for FSU, which is 1-0 for the 15th time in 16 seasons under coach Leonard Hamilton.

“I thought that we showed a lot of first-game jitters at the beginning of the game,” Hamilton said. “I saw a lot of things I liked. I thought our effort was good.”

Most teams should be so lucky to have these types of jitters.

Bolstered by Mann’s versatility and a confident, aggressive effort from Koumadje, FSU claimed a double-digit lead midway through the first half and kept the Colonials (1-1) comfortably at arm’s length the rest of the way.

The Seminoles shot better than 62 percent in the first 20 minutes, and they went into the break with 50 points despite not attempting a single free throw.

“We executed the game plan very well,” said senior guard Braian Angola, who had eight points and five assists. “The way we’re running, I’m very excited to see what we look like when we clean up some of the mistakes that we have, how we’re going to be.”

The Seminoles will get their next chance to do that on Friday, when they play Fordham at the Jamaica Classic in Montego Bay.

Not that there was much to nitpick from Tuesday’s performance. Aside from a slow start to the second half – during which the Colonials outscored FSU 13-5 to cut their deficit to 10 points – the Seminoles mostly overmatched their opponents.

FSU finished with advantages in rebounding (37-31), points in the paint (52-20) and fast-break points (14-2), and the Seminoles forced the Colonials into 19 turnovers.

While George Washington heated up a bit in the second half, their lineup turned out to be a bit top-heavy. Four players scored at least 10 points – led by 18 each from Terry Nolan Jr. and Jair Bolden – but no one else scored more than three.

GWU coach Maurice Joseph said Florida State had a lot to do with that.

“Their length and athleticism, you can’t replicate that with your walk-ons in practice,” he said. “It’s something that you’ve got to face.”

FSU got contributions from plenty of fresh faces, too.

Heralded freshman M.J. Walker made a fine first impression with 12 points on 4 of 5 shooting, including a 3-for-4 mark from 3-point range. Redshirt freshman Mfiondu Kabengele scored 10 in his debut and 7-foot freshman center Ike Obiagu made the most of his time on the floor with three blocks in just seven minutes.

“That shows a little bit of what (Obiagu) brings to the table from a physical standpoint,” Hamilton said. “Defensively, he’s going to be a factor in games.”

It all added up to what Hamilton believes could be a blueprint for success this season: Strong early efforts from veteran starters followed by a spark from young players coming off the bench.

If that sounds familiar, it should. The Seminoles last year built a reputation as one of the deepest teams in the country thanks to a talented group of reserves – affectionately dubbed “The Boom Squad” – that complemented the star trio of Dwayne Bacon, Jonathan Isaac and Xavier Rathan-Mayes.

Bacon, Isaac and Rathan-Mayes are gone, but the philosophy might still be in place.

“I think that’s kind of what we’re going to be all year long,” Hamilton said. “We’re going to have guys that have the ability to come in and make a difference in games.”

 
NO        NAME          GS MIN FGM FGA 3FGM 3FGA FTM FTA PTS   OREB DREB REB PF AST TO BLK STL
== ==================== == === === === ==== ==== === === ===   ==== ==== === == === == === ===
 0 Phil Cofer            f  24   6   9    1    3   2   2  15      2    2   4  0   0  0   0   0
 2 CJ Walker             g  29   3   9    1    2   0   0   7      0    5   5  1   4  2   0   3
 5 PJ Savoy              g  13   1   5    0    4   0   0   2      0    1   1  1   2  0   0   0
14 Terance Mann          g  32   8  10    1    2   0   0  17      6    2   8  1   2  4   0   0
21 Christ Koumadje       c  21   7  11    0    0   0   0  14      1    6   7  4   0  2   5   0
11 Braian Angola            23   3   6    2    5   0   0   8      0    0   0  2   5  2   0   2
12 Ike Obiagu                7   0   2    0    0   0   0   0      2    1   3  3   0  2   3   0
13 Anthony Polite            4   0   0    0    0   0   0   0      0    1   1  0   1  1   0   1
23 MJ Walker                18   4   5    3    4   1   2  12      0    3   3  2   2  2   0   1
25 Mfiondu Kabengele        17   5   9    0    0   0   0  10      2    0   2  1   1  1   0   1
31 Wyatt Wilkes              3   1   1    0    0   0   0   2      0    0   0  0   0  0   0   0
40 Brandon Allen             9   0   1    0    1   0   0   0      0    1   1  1   2  0   0   0
   Team                                                                2   2                  
                     =========================================================================
   FSU                   5 200  38  68    8   21   3   4  87     13   24  37 16  19 16   8   8
   Opp                     200  24  63    7   26  12  14  67     15   16  31 11   6 19   0   7


  1 2 Total
GEORGE WASHINGTON
32
35
67
FLORIDA STATE
50
37
87
Attendance: 7,455

FLORIDA STATE 67, FORDHAM 43
11/17/2017, Jamaica Classic, Montego Bay, Jamaica

From the FSU Website, seminoles.com.

Florida State Tops Fordham, 67-43, At Jamaica Classic.

MONTEGO BAY, JAMAICA – Redshirt freshman Mfiondu Kabengele scored 15 points and pulled down nine rebounds and junior Terance Mann scored 14 points and pulled down five rebounds to lead Florida State to a 67-43 victory over Fordham at the Montego Bay Convention Centre in the Jamaica Classic. Kabengele and Mann were the only two Seminoles in double figure scoring as the Seminoles utilized a suffocating defense that limited the Rams to 12 made field goals and a .231 field goal shooting percentage while blocking nine shots and recording 12 steals.

Florida State’s height advantage and ball-hawking defense was on display from the opening tip as they scored took their first double digit lead at 19-9 with 7:43 remaining in the first half. The Seminoles increased their lead to 20 at the 16:01 mark of the second half (40-20) and led by as many as 28 (50-22) with just over 10 minutes remaining.

“I was very pleased with our defensive intensity,” said Seminole Head Coach Leonard Hamilton whose team improved to 2-0 for the third consecutive season. “I wasn’t as pleased with our offensive execution, but we are a work in progress and I really like the direction we are heading on the offensive end of the court. We still have a lot of work to do to reach our potential but I like the direction we are going.”

Playing in only his second career game, Kabengele scored in double figures for the second consecutive game. He scored 10 points in Florida State’s season-opening victory over George Washington on Tuesday in Tallahassee. Kabengele caught fire in the second half as he scored 10 of his 15 points as he took advantage of his size in the paint. He scored his second half points on a lay-up, a dunk, a 3-pointer and three free throws made.

The Seminoles also repeatedly took advantage of Christ Koumadje’s ability to reach high over the smaller Fordham lineup to score easy points. The 7-4 center scored seven points with all three of his field goals coming on thunderous dunks and picturesque assists from both senior Braian Angola and sophomore Trent Forrest.

Florida State hammered the Ram’s basket throughout the game with six dunks including three by Koumadje and one each by Mann, Kebengele and senior Phil Cofer.

While the Seminoles were performing well on the offensive end, it was the defensive effort that propelled them to a win in their first game against Fordham.

The Seminoles limited the Rams to 12 field goals in the game – six in each half while holding them to the fifth-best field goal shooting defense mark in school history. The Ram’s .231 mark from the field is tied for the fifth best in school history and is the best mark since holding George Washington to a .226 mark on Dec. 4, 2016 in a 67-48 win over the Colonials.

Florida State held Fordham to one of 22 made 3-point field goals made including successfully defending their final 16 long range shots of the night.

Florida State held the Rams to 18 first half points, 21 percent field goal shooting in the second half and totaled double digit steals for the second consecutive game. Led by Trent Forrest’s three steals, a total of seven Seminoles earned at least one steals. The Seminoles have 23 steals in the first two games of the season.

The Seminoles held the Rams to six points in the first 10:26 of the second half in extending their lead to 28 points. Fordham scored 25 second half points with more than half (13 of 25) coming from the free throw line.

“We are happy to get the win over a Fordham team that is going to do well in their league,” said Mann. “Everybody contributed and everybody played hard. We have a lot of work to do to become a complete team and this is a step forward in reaching our goals. We have to continue to compete as a team, listen to our coaches, follow our scouting reports and support each other, and we will continue to get better. That’s our goal – to get better every day and in every game we play.”

Fourteen players earned action for the Seminoles and 11 played at least 10 minutes in the victory. Only Mann, the Seminoles’ lone returning starter from their NCAA Tournament team a year ago, played more than 25 minutes against Fordham.

 
NO        NAME          GS MIN FGM FGA 3FGM 3FGA FTM FTA PTS   OREB DREB REB PF AST TO BLK STL
== ==================== == === === === ==== ==== === === ===   ==== ==== === == === == === ===
 0 Phil Cofer            f  17   2   5    0    2   5   7   9      0    2   2  2   0  2   0   0
 2 CJ Walker             g  22   1   3    0    2   1   2   3      0    3   3  3   3  2   0   0
 5 PJ Savoy              g  15   2   7    2    7   0   0   6      0    1   1  2   0  3   0   1
14 Terance Mann          g  26   7   9    0    2   0   0  14      1    4   5  0   1  2   0   2
21 Christ Koumadje       c  18   3   5    0    0   1   2   7      2    4   6  2   1  1   4   0
 3 Trent Forrest            21   1   1    0    0   0   3   2      2    4   6  1   5  3   1   3
11 Braian Angola            22   2   7    2    5   1   2   7      1    3   4  1   3  2   0   2
12 Ike Obiagu               11   0   1    0    0   0   2   0      2    0   2  3   0  2   4   1
15 Justin Lindner            1   0   0    0    0   0   0   0      0    0   0  0   0  0   0   0
20 Travis Light              1   0   1    0    1   0   0   0      0    0   0  0   0  0   0   0
23 MJ Walker                23   0   3    0    2   0   0   0      0    1   1  4   1  0   0   2
25 Mfiondu Kabengele        12   5   8    1    3   4   7  15      5    4   9  2   2  1   0   1
33 Will Miles                1   0   0    0    0   0   0   0      0    0   0  0   0  0   0   0
40 Brandon Allen            10   2   2    0    0   0   0   4      0    0   0  2   1  0   0   0
   Team                                                                1   1                  
                     =========================================================================
   FSU                   5 200  25  52    5   24  12  25  67     13   27  40 22  17 18   9  12
   Opp                     200  12  52    1   22  18  25  43     14   23  37 19   3 23   2   8


  1 2 Total
FLORIDA STATE
35
32
67
FORDHAM
18
25
43
Attendance: 1,431

FLORIDA STATE 90, COLORADO STATE 73
11/19/2017, Jamaica Classic, Montego Bay, Jamaica

From the FSU Website, seminoles.com.

FSU Men Top Colorado State, 90-73, To Take Inaugural Jamaica Classic Title.

MONTEGO BAY, JAMAICA – Freshman M.J. Walker scored 22 points and junior Terance Mann added 20 to lead Florida State to a 90-73 victory over Colorado State in the championship game of the inaugural Jamaica Classic at the Montego Bay Convention Centre. Walker made five 3-point shots and was a perfect three-of-three from the free throw line as Florida State ran its record to 3-0 on the season.

The Seminoles outscored the Rams by a 42-23 margin in the final 15:11 of the game to gain the win.

“I was pleased that these games (at the Jamaica Classic) gave us things that we can learn about ourselves,” FSU coach Leonard Hamilton said. “This team (Colorado State) showed us a Virginia-type defense where you really have to think and I think that challenged our inexperience.”

Colorado State, which trailed by a 47-36 margin at the break, outscored the Seminoles by a 14-1 score to open the second half. The early blitz by Colorado State gave the Rams a 50-48 lead with 15:11 remaining.

Florida State then righted itself and outscored the Rams by an 8-4 margin over the next 3:30 to take a 56-50 lead. Senior Brian Angola scored two baskets, Mann one and Walker one as the Seminoles took the lead for good.

The Seminoles extended their lead to 70-61 with 7:49 left and were comfortably ahead by an 80-67 margin with 3:32 left in the game.

Walker, playing in only his third career game, scored 14 points in the first half on four made 3-point shots and a free throw. He began his hot-shooting game at the 13:29 mark to put the Seminoles up 15-13. He extended FSU’s lead three more times in the first half including 30-21 on two long range shots within 1:38 of each other.

“Our defensive effort and execution stayed strong,” Hamilton said. “These types of games allow you to grow a little bit faster.”

 
NO        NAME          GS MIN FGM FGA 3FGM 3FGA FTM FTA PTS   OREB DREB REB PF AST TO BLK STL
== ==================== == === === === ==== ==== === === ===   ==== ==== === == === == === ===
 0 Phil Cofer            f  23   3   8    0    1   0   0   6      4    2   6  1   0  2   0   0
 2 CJ Walker             g  23   2   7    2    5   5   6  11      0    2   2  2   1  1   0   0
 5 PJ Savoy              g   8   3   5    1    3   0   0   7      0    0   0  0   0  0   0   2
14 Terance Mann          g  34   8  12    0    1   4   6  20      4    5   9  2   4  3   0   0
21 Christ Koumadje       c  12   0   1    0    0   0   0   0      0    0   0  2   0  1   2   0
 3 Trent Forrest            20   0   2    0    0   0   0   0      0    4   4  1   6  2   0   3
11 Braian Angola            31   4  10    0    4   1   3   9      0    5   5  3   8  2   0   4
12 Ike Obiagu                7   1   1    0    0   1   4   3      0    2   2  2   0  0   0   0
23 MJ Walker                27   7  12    5    8   3   3  22      0    1   1  5   0  2   0   1
25 Mfiondu Kabengele        15   4   4    1    1   3   5  12      1    3   4  1   1  1   0   0
   Team                                                                1   1                  
                     =========================================================================
   FSU                   5 200  32  62    9   23  17  27  90      9   25  34 19  20 14   2  10
   Opp                     200  26  20    9   24  12  16  73     11   26  37 23  18 22   4   6


  1 2 Total
FLORIDA STATE
47
43
90
COLORADO STATE
36
37
73
Attendance: 1,951

FLORIDA STATE 98, KENNESAW STATE 79
11/22/2017, TALLAHASSEE, FL

From the FSU Website, seminoles.com.

Cofer’s Big Day Leads Noles Past Kennesaw State.

by Tim Linafelt, Senior Writer

TALLAHASSEE, FL – After dealing with an ankle injury and a crowded depth chart in each of the last two seasons, Phil Cofer is thankful to just be back on the basketball court.

But when Cofer and his Florida State teammates pass the turkey and mashed potatoes tomorrow afternoon, the Seminoles might say a quick word of thanks for the senior’s performance against Kennesaw State, too.

Cofer matched a career high with 21 points and fell just one rebound short of a double-double as FSU raced past Kennesaw State, 98-79, in a Wednesday matinee at the Donald L. Tucker Center.

“It feels great to be back out there” Cofer said. “Just being out there with my brothers. This year, I’m trying to be a leader … I came a long way, injury-wise.”

Cofer scored the game’s first six points on the way to a 9-of-11 shooting effort, and his 28 minutes were the most since he logged 29 at NC State on Jan. 17, 2015.

And he did it from all over the floor – Cofer threw down a dunk and a handful of layups, was 2 for 2 from the free-throw line and even drained his only 3-point attempt.

“There’s really no limit to what Phil can do,” sophomore guard Trent Forrest said. “He can score, he can rebound. … It gives us a lot because he’s energetic, he causes mismatches on offense and defense and he can guard 1-through-5. It’s great having that versatility.”

Braian Angola (17 points, seven rebounds), Terance Mann (13 points), C.J. Walker (12) and M.J. Walker all joined Cofer in double-figures, and the Seminoles shot a season-best 42.3 percent from 3-point range.

That includes a 2-of-3 mark from Angola and 3-of-5 effort from M.J. Walker, the freshman who has scored at least 11 points in three of his first four games.

“I think he’s playing extremely hard,” FSU coach Leonard Hamilton said about Walker. “He’s playing with a reckless abandon both offensively and defensively, and I like that.”

The Seminoles needed less than five minutes to claim their first double-digit lead, and that advantage ballooned to 25 points when Angola finished off a three-point play early in the second half.

Senior guard James Scott led Kennesaw State with 17 points, 15 of which came in the second half.

Otherwise, the Owls, who finished third nationally in 3-point percentage (41.6) a year ago, did most of their damage from the perimeter.

KSU connected on 9 of 18 shots from distance, with senior Nick Masterson, the nation’s second-most accurate 3-point shooter in 2016-17, leading the way.

Masterson hit 4 of 6 from beyond the arc, and Kosta Jankovic was 3 for 3.

“I still think we’ve got a ways to go, but I love the effort, I love the attitude,” Hamilton said. “We need more games to keep rounding into shape.”

FSU won’t have wait long for its next game. The Seminoles host The Citadel on Friday at 8 p.m.

First, however, they’ll feast.

Hamilton and his wife, Claudette, will host the team for Thanksgiving dinner at their home and, as usual, an extensive spread is in store.

“I’m going to fix a couple family recipes,” Hamilton said. “I’m going to fix a couple catering trays of corn pudding. I’m going to do an unbelievable family, traditional macaroni and cheese with a lot of different things in it. … We’ve got about four or five turkeys.

“We’re going to celebrate and give thanks for all our wonderful blessings that we’ve received over the years.”

By then, perhaps Cofer will have flipped his attention from his breakout game to his favorite item on the menu.

“He definitely can cook,” Cofer said with a smile. “He’s got all types of stuff, but one of my favorite foods is mac and cheese, so I’m definitely looking forward to that.

“People think it’s weird, but I put sugar in my mac and cheese. That’s what we do from the south.”

 
NO        NAME          GS MIN FGM FGA 3FGM 3FGA FTM FTA PTS   OREB DREB REB PF AST TO BLK STL
== ==================== == === === === ==== ==== === === ===   ==== ==== === == === == === ===
 0 Phil Cofer            f  28   9  11    1    1   2   2  21      4    5   9  1   2  1   1   0
 2 CJ Walker             g  23   4   9    2    5   2   2  12      1    0   1  1   3  1   0   2
11 Braian Angola         g  25   7   8    2    3   1   1  17      3    4   7  1   4  2   1   0
12 Ike Obiagu            c  15   2   8    0    0   0   0   4      2    2   4  2   0  0   2   0
14 Terance Mann          g  27   6   9    1    3   0   0  13      0    0   0  1   2  0   0   2
 3 Trent Forrest            23   3   5    0    1   2   2   8      2    4   6  0   6  1   0   1
 5 PJ Savoy                  9   2   5    2    5   0   0   6      0    0   0  2   2  0   0   0
23 MJ Walker                20   4  10    3    5   0   0  11      1    1   2  4   0  1   0   0
25 Mfiondu Kabengele        15   1   2    0    0   2   4   4      2    2   4  4   0  1   0   1
31 Wyatt Wilkes              6   0   2    0    2   0   1   0      0    0   0  0   0  3   0   1
40 Brandon Allen             9   1   2    0    1   0   0   2      0    1   1  1   0  0   0   0
   Team                                                           2        2                  
                     =========================================================================
   FSU                   5 200  39  71   11   26   9  12  98     17   19  36 17  19 10   4   7
   Opp                     200  28  62    9   18  14  17  79     12   15  27 13  15 13   1   6


  1 2 Total
KENNESAW STATE
42
37
79
FLORIDA STATE
54
44
98
Attendance: 5,284

FLORIDA STATE 113, CITADEL 78
11/24/2017, TALLAHASSEE, FL

From the FSU Website, seminoles.com.

Basketball Beats The Citadel, 113-78; Improves to 5-0.

TALLAHASSEE, FL - The secret is out.

All-off season, Mfiondu Kabengele was the buzz inside the Florida State basketball locker room. The redshirt freshman sat out last season working on his game and waiting his turn due to a deep Seminole roster.

Against The Citadel on Friday evening, “Fee,” as the team calls him, displayed a unique blend of skill, strength and athleticism as he led FSU to a dominating 113-78 win over the Bulldogs.

“I told ya’ll, I tried to tell you. People are sleeping on him,” Terance Mann said assertively following the game. “Just how physical he is, so aggressive as a player, he’s hard to guard. He learns fast and he’s trying to prove people wrong. You can see it out there.”

Against the Bulldogs, the 6-9 native of Ontario, Canada dropped 16 points and added 12 rebounds in just 14 minutes of action.

His ability on the glass was evident as the big man with a 7-4 wingspan grabbed five offensive rebounds, often turning those into easy buckets at the rim. On the evening the Noles scored 27 second-chance points, largely contributed to by Kabengele’s performance.

“He has a knack for stuffing the stat sheet. He has a way of getting the big rebound and putting it back, being in the right place at the right time,” FSU coach Leonard Hamilton said. “You like to see it that from a guy that doesn’t have a lot of experience. He’s only scratching the surface.”

“We all used to tell him last year, ‘we can’t wait to see you on the court’ and now seeing it, we knew it was coming,” PJ Savoy added. “He’s strong and he really wants to rebound, you don’t see that every day. He goes to the glass so hard.”

Kabengele aided FSU to a 53-39 edge on the boards over the Bulldogs as the Noles pounded the offensive glass for 16 rebounds on the night. The redshirt freshman was also a perfect 4 for 4 from the free-throw line and added a block in an all-around efficient effort.

“He raises his level to higher heights (every game). He motivates himself, plays with a lot of emotion and the game means a lot to him,” Hamilton said of the forward. “He takes on another personality when the game starts.”

Fellow big-man Phil Cofer continued his strong stretch of play as he added 15 points, while notching three rebounds in the win. The senior flashed his patented tenacity and ability to create scoring chances at the basket finishing 7 of 9 from the floor on the night.

“Last year he was finding his way back after the injury, but this year he’s bringing so much energy,” Braian Angola said on Cofer. “He goes hard every single possession and we know what to expect from him.”

The 6-8 native of Fayetteville, Georgia has displayed the ability to extend his game to the mid-range and beyond the arc this season, rounding out his game into a player that’s dangerous at all three levels. His Senior leadership is also needed on a team with so many young players.

“He’s improved a lot, he’s taking being a leader seriously on the court and he knows we look up to him for leadership,” Savoy said. “He wants more weight on his shoulders, he’s stepping up.”

The Seminoles moved to 5-0 on the season and adjusted well to the high-tempo the Bulldogs wanted to play with. The Citadel came into the contest leading the nation running over 82 possessions a game. The Noles were often pressed in the full-court, but it led to numerous transition opportunities, a style FSU welcomed.

“It’s fun for us, because we all want to play like that, this is one of the most fun games we’ve played in this season,” Mann said on the pace.

Florida State set season highs in points and in threes made (13), while also running a season-high 89 possessions. The Seminoles’ 38 3-point shots attempted were only one off the school-record of 39 which came against Wichita State on March 17, 2004.

“It’s a lot of fun for us on the court and I know it’s fun to watch,” Savoy said smiling.

For the Seminoles, Angola and Mann each led the team with 21 points with Angola scoring all his points on shots made beyond the arc, totaling seven on the evening. Mann added a team and career-high eight assists in the victory.

 
NO        NAME          GS MIN FGM FGA 3FGM 3FGA FTM FTA PTS   OREB DREB REB PF AST TO BLK STL
== ==================== == === === === ==== ==== === === ===   ==== ==== === == === == === ===
 0 Phil Cofer            f  22   7   9    0    0   1   3  15      2    1   3  0   1  2   1   1
 2 CJ Walker             g  23   4   7    1    4   0   0   9      0    1   1  3   4  3   1   1
11 Braian Angola         g  21   7  11    7   11   0   0  21      1    5   6  2   3  1   0   1
12 Ike Obiagu            c  15   2   3    0    0   1   4   5      1    2   3  3   0  0   3   0
14 Terance Mann          g  31   8  14    2    6   3   5  21      3    3   6  1   8  2   2   2
 3 Trent Forrest            23   3   5    0    0   4   4  10      0    2   2  2   3  0   1   1
 5 PJ Savoy                 19   5  14    4   10   0   0  14      2    5   7  2   2  0   0   0
15 Justin Lindner            2   0   0    0    0   0   0   0      0    1   1  0   0  2   0   0
20 Travis Light              2   0   1    0    1   0   0   0      0    1   1  0   0  0   0   0
23 MJ Walker                11   0   4    0    3   2   2   2      0    2   2  1   1  1   0   0
25 Mfiondu Kabengele        14   6   9    0    0   4   4  16      5    7  12  2   0  2   1   0
31 Wyatt Wilkes              8   0   1    0    1   0   0   0      1    3   4  1   0  0   1   0
33 Will Miles                2   0   1    0    1   0   0   0      0    0   0  1   0  0   0   0
35 Harrison Prieto           2   0   0    0    0   0   0   0      0    0   0  0   0  0   0   0
40 Brandon Allen             5   0   1    0    1   0   0   0      0    0   0  2   1  1   0   1
   Team                                                           1    4   5                  
                     =========================================================================
   FSU                   5 200  42  80   14   38  15  22 113     16   37  53 20  23 14  10   7
   Opp                     200  26  78   13   38  13  21  78     17   22  39 18  17 17   2   8


  1 2 Total
CITADEL
35
43
78
FLORIDA STATE
52
61
113
Attendance: 6,021

FLORIDA STATE 78, RUTGERS 73
11/28/2017, NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ, ACC/Big 10 Challenge

From the FSU Website, seminoles.com.

Walker, Cofer Deliver As FSU Men Ace Road Test At Rutgers.

PISCATAWAY, NJ — It was the first litmus test for Florida State and Rutgers on Tuesday night.

CJ Walker scored 24 points and Phil Cofer added 19 to lead the unbeaten Seminoles past Rutgers 78-73.

“It was a tremendous test for us,” Florida State coach Leonard Hamilton. “This was the kind of game I thought we really needed.”

Walker was 6 of 11 from the floor and made 10 of 11 free throws. Cofer was 7-of-11 shooting and made four 3-pointers. Ike Obiagu grabbed 10 rebounds and chipped in five points for Florida State (6-0).

Eugene Omoruyi scored 22 points to lead Rutgers (6-1). Corey Sanders added 20 points, and Deshawn Freeman followed up his first double-double of the season with 15 points and 16 rebounds.

“Eugene has been awesome,” Rutgers coach Steve Pikiell said. “He’s the most improved guy in our program. I’ve been saying that. Brings it every night. He’ll get better and better. I’m excited about his progress.”

Freeman energized the crowd when he was fouled by Mfiondu Kabengele, raising his arms several times to get the crowd to its feet with 14:35 remaining. Rutgers went on to take a 44-41 lead after Omoruyi converted the 3-point play and Freeman made a pair of free throws.

Walker then scored the next 11 points for the Seminoles, hitting 5 of 7 from the line and a pair of 3-pointers. Trent Forrest made a layup and Florida State led 53-45 with 12:28 to play.

“We’re accustomed to playing against crowds like this: passionate crowds in the ACC. But I thought our kids showed a lot of character,” Hamilton said. “Obviously CJ just recognized something when his teammates were in foul trouble, and he stepped up a little bit.”

“It was really my teammates,” Walker said. “I hit a shot, then I hit another one and my teammates knew it was my time. They let me just put the team on my back and they just went with me.”

The Scarlet Knights pulled to 69-66 after Omoruyi’s layup with 1:56 to go, but they didn’t get closer.

BIG PICTURE
Florida State: The Seminoles have not been 6-0 since 2008-09. As the first true road game, it was a good tuneup before they travel to No. 6 Florida where an upset would be a nice resume builder.

Rutgers: The Scarlet Knights will have to regroup quickly as they start Big Ten Conference play on the road at No.12 Minnesota before hosting No. 3 Michigan State on Tuesday night.

TURNING POINT
“Every game we play we have somebody different, a new leading scorer,” Hamilton said. “We’re still trying to find ourselves, very similar to Rutgers. I thought the deciding factor was that we had a guy (Walker) that was able to make some plays down the stretch and hit some free throws. That put us in a good position to win the game.”

 
NO        NAME          GS MIN FGM FGA 3FGM 3FGA FTM FTA PTS   OREB DREB REB PF AST TO BLK STL
== ==================== == === === === ==== ==== === === ===   ==== ==== === == === == === ===
 0 Phil Cofer            f  37   7  11    4    5   1   2  19      0    4   4  2   1  0   0   0
 2 CJ Walker             g  29   6  11    2    3  10  11  24      0    0   0  3   3  0   0   4
11 Braian Angola         g  32   1   7    0    4   4   5   6      1    1   2  2   4  5   0   0
12 Ike Obiagu            c  26   2   4    0    0   1   5   5      4    6  10  3   0  0   5   2
14 Terance Mann          g  26   3   6    0    0   1   2   7      1    2   3  4   4  1   0   1
 3 Trent Forrest            24   3   6    0    0   2   5   8      2    2   4  2   0  3   0   3
 5 PJ Savoy                  2   0   2    0    2   0   0   0      0    0   0  0   1  0   0   1
23 MJ Walker                10   0   3    0    1   0   0   0      0    0   0  4   1  0   0   1
25 Mfiondu Kabengele        13   4   8    0    1   1   2   9      3    2   5  4   0  0   0   0
40 Brandon Allen             1   0   0    0    0   0   0   0      0    0   0  0   0  0   0   0
   Team                                                           2    6   8                  
                     =========================================================================
   FSU                   5 200  26  58    6   16  20  32  78     13   23  36 24  14  9   5  12
   Opp                     200  26  64    5   17  16  20  73     17   24  41 24   7 14   2   3


  1 2 Total
FLORIDA STATE
36
42
78
RUTGERS
35
38
73
Attendance: 4,853

FLORIDA STATE 83, FLORIDA 66
12/04/2017, GAINESVILLE, FL

From the FSU Website, seminoles.com.

Swamped! Mann, Seminoles Overwhelm Fifth-Ranked Florida.

by Ariya Massoudi, Contributor

GAINESVILLE, FL — Four straight.

Behind a gritty defensive effort and a monstrous day on the glass, Florida State convincingly beat No. 5 Florida 83-66 on the road to secure its fourth-consecutive win over the Gators.

Terance Mann led the Noles with 25 points eight 8 rebounds as FSU ran away with a big non-conference win in front of an over-capacity crowd of 10,425 at Exactech Arena.

“We played with so much aggressiveness and toughness tonight,” FSU head coach Leonard Hamilton said following the game. “UF brought the best out of us tonight, and hopefully we’ll continue to grow.”

Florida State got out to a hot start, opening on a 10-1 run thanks to early 3-pointers by CJ Walker and Braian Angola.

The Gators re-took the lead at 18-14 after an Egor Koulechov triple, but the Seminoles quickly responded with a 7-0 run thanks to Mann.

An and-one finish from the junior was followed up with another layup and an alley-oop to give FSU a 24-18 lead with 7:30 left in the first half.

The Noles would hold the lead for most of the half as they routinely got into the passing lanes and forced the Gators into turnovers. Trailing 35-34, FSU exploded on an 8-0 run, capped by a monstrous alley-oop dunk by Phil Cofer. The senior grabbed a lob from MJ Walker and slammed it home with one hand to emphatically end the half as the Noles led 42-35 heading into the break.

“We wanted to make sure coming out of the half that we started over and treated the game as zero-zero,” Trent Forrest said on the team’s mentality starting the second half. “We made sure to emphasize getting on the glass as well, it’s an area we’ve wanted to improve on.”

Early in the second half the Noles continued to push the pace, going on an 8-0 run to extend their lead to 56-44 with 13:39 left, a stretch ignited by back-to-back deep shots from CJ Walker. FSU switched into a 2-3 zone to mix up looks and stymie the Gators early in the half.

“My teammates believe in me and they want me to take those shots,” Walker said. “I said over the summer it was something I would do, if the team needed me to be that guy, whatever it takes to win.”

An MJ Walker triple and a tip-in by Cofer gave FSU its largest lead of the game at 61-47. From there the rout was on as the Seminoles never looked back. Highlighting the big second half, FSU held UF without a field goal for nearly 10 minutes.

As the fans in orange and blue began to head for the exits, the Noles continued to expand their lead. Mann made seemingly everything he put up, including a slew of acrobatic put-backs. An aggressive Seminole squad continued to attack the rim to aid Mann’s effort and a strong showing from the free-throw line (20-24) put the game out of reach.

A dunk by Ike Obiagu and a triple from Angola put the icing on the cake, extending FSU’s lead to 83-64.

“We stayed focused for an entire 40 minutes. We know we can do something big this year,” Angola said. “We stayed together the entire time and played great defense.”

On the evening, the Noles dominated the Gators on the glass, winning the rebounding battle 51-34. FSU turned 23 offensive rebounds into 24 second-chance points. The Noles turned the Gators over 17 times and cashed those into 19 points off turnovers. FSU’s stingy defensive effort resulted in the normally hot-shooting Gators making just 36 percent from the floor and only 24 percent from behind the arc.

CJ Walker added 17 points in the victory, while Phil Cofer recorded a double-double with 10 points and 12 rebounds.

“This is a great win for Florida State’s program,” Walker said. “This is a big win for us going forward, we have to keep this level of focus.”

 
NO        NAME          GS MIN FGM FGA 3FGM 3FGA FTM FTA PTS   OREB DREB REB PF AST TO BLK STL
== ==================== == === === === ==== ==== === === ===   ==== ==== === == === == === ===
 0 Phil Cofer            f  29   4  12    0    1   2   2  10      6    6  12  1   0  1   0   0
 2 CJ Walker             g  34   5   9    3    6   4   6  17      1    4   5  4   4  2   0   3
11 Braian Angola         g  33   2  11    2    7   4   4  10      0    5   5  2   2  4   0   0
12 Ike Obiagu            c  10   2   3    0    0   0   0   4      2    0   2  2   0  1   1   0
14 Terance Mann          g  34  11  17    0    3   3   4  25      3    5   8  0   1  0   0   2
 3 Trent Forrest            22   2   6    0    0   5   6   9      3    3   6  5   1  0   0   0
 5 PJ Savoy                  5   0   2    0    1   0   0   0      0    1   1  1   0  0   0   0
23 MJ Walker                21   2   6    2    5   2   2   8      0    1   1  1   1  2   1   2
25 Mfiondu Kabengele        12   0   6    0    0   0   0   0      2    0   2  3   0  1   1   1
40 Brandon Allen             0   0   0    0    0   0   0   0      0    0   0  0   0  0   0   0
   Team                                                           6    3   9         1        
                     =========================================================================
   FSU                   5 200  28  72    7   23  20  24  83     23   28  51 19   9 12   3   8
   Opp                     200  21  58    6   25  18  25  66     11   23  34 20   7 17   6   3


  1 2 Total
FLORIDA STATE
42
41
83
FLORIDA
35
31
66
Attendance: 10,425

FLORIDA STATE 96, LOYOLA-MARYLAND 71
12/06/2017, TALLAHASSEE, FL

From the FSU Website, seminoles.com.

Basketball Tops Loyola, 96-71, To Stay Undefeated.

by Bob Thomas

TALLAHASSEE, FL – Wednesday was a night of celebration at the Donald L. Tucker with the Florida State men’s basketball team extending its home winning streak to 25 games and freshly-anointed football coach Willie Taggart leading the chop from mid-court after addressing the crowd at halftime.

The Seminoles were well on their way to a 96-71 victory over Loyola by the time Taggart left the floor after trading high-fives with the student section.

With Braian Angola leading five double-figure scorers with 18 points and the team shooting a season-best 58 percent from the floor the Noles are now 8-0; their best start since opening the 2003-04 season 10-0 – 14 seasons ago.

Attacking the glass early and often on the offensive end, it was clear the Noles were not suffering from a hangover following Monday night’s 83-66 road rout of No. 5 Florida. Behind scoring contributions from a quartet of players, FSU ran out to a 17-6 lead less than five minutes into the game against the over-matched Greyhounds (1-7).

“It was a quick turnaround for them and I thought if we got off to a quick start we’d be okay, but they came out right from the start of the game,” Loyola coach G.G. Smith said. “Once we didn’t get that quick start and we’re down 10-12 on the road against an ACC team it’s really tough for us to come back. From the jump, we weren’t able to do it.

“They were ready to go and beat us up pretty good today.”

It was a pleasing response by coach Leonard Hamilton’s young charges.

“This gave us what we needed,” said Hamilton, whose team owns the nation’s third-longest home winning streak and remains one of 12 unbeaten Division I programs in the country. “Part of developing into the best team you can become is sometimes you have to overcome those mental challenges of having an emotional victory, then coming back and have to recharge your batteries and do the same thing again.

“I didn’t think we came out with the same level of focus [as Florida], but I thought that from an execution standpoint there were times we executed very well offensively. Defensively, we didn’t contain the dribble very well and I didn’t think we did a good job of rebounding their misses. That gives us a lot to go back and work on.”

Despite yielding too much dribble penetration to the Greyhound guards, the Noles never let up on the offensive end.

Trimming the deficit to seven after back-to-back baskets, Loyola was on the receiving end of a 12-2 run with M.J. Walker, Brandon Allen and CJ Walker draining 3-pointers and Phil Cofer capping the splurge with an old-school three-point play. After twice expanding the lead to 20, the Noles carried a 46-31 lead into the locker room at the break.

The second half proved more of the same as Hamilton’s squad built their lead to as many as 26.

Sophomore CJ Walker (15 points) and freshman M.J. Walker (14) were a combined 7-of-13 from 3-point range, leading a barrage of 11 triples. Senior Phil Cofer pitched in 12 – his fifth consecutive double-digit game – and Terance Mann added 11.

While Cofer has plenty of reason to be excited about his play – he entered the season having never put together back-to-back double-digit scoring performances – he’s even more encouraged about the attitude his team carried to the court following the big win at Florida.

“After that game I think everybody was looking forward to the next game,” Cofer said. “We celebrated it, watched film on it, but everybody was thinking about the next game. ‘All right, we have to move on.’ Everybody wants to do more than just get a win. We want to get back to the [NCAA] tournament and make a run. Everybody’s locked in this year.”

The Seminoles will be tested twice in the next 10 days. They face Tulane Monday in Tampa, Fla., as part of the Heritage Insurance Classic, then travel to Sunrise, Fla. to tackle Oklahoma State on Dec. 16 in the Orange Bowl Classic.

“Our maturity has to happen fast,” CJ Walker said. “We have to teach a lot to our younger guys as well. Playing so many games back-to-back, our maturity level has to go up because if we want to win we still have to stay humble. Staying humble is the biggest part of becoming mature.”

 
NO        NAME          GS MIN FGM FGA 3FGM 3FGA FTM FTA PTS   OREB DREB REB PF AST TO BLK STL
== ==================== == === === === ==== ==== === === ===   ==== ==== === == === == === ===
 0 Phil Cofer            f  23   4   7    0    0   4   5  12      0    4   4  0   1  1   0   1
 2 CJ Walker             g  27   4  10    3    7   4   5  15      0    3   3  2   6  2   0   3
11 Braian Angola         g  27   7   8    2    3   2   2  18      0    4   4  1   1  2   2   1
12 Ike Obiagu            c  15   4   5    0    0   1   2   9      0    3   3  3   0  1   3   0
14 Terance Mann          g  22   5   9    0    1   1   1  11      1    6   7  1   2  1   0   0
 3 Trent Forrest            29   3   4    1    2   1   1   8      0    5   5  0   4  3   1   0
23 MJ Walker                23   5   8    4    6   0   0  14      1    0   1  5   3  0   0   0
25 Mfiondu Kabengele        14   1   3    0    0   4   4   6      2    1   3  4   0  2   3   0
31 Wyatt Wilkes             13   0   2    0    2   0   0   0      0    2   2  0   2  2   0   0
40 Brandon Allen             7   1   3    1    3   0   0   3      0    1   1  0   0  0   0   1
   Team                                                           2    1   3                  
                     =========================================================================
   FSU                   5 200  34  59   11   24  17  20  96      6   30  36 16  19 14   9   6
   Opp                     200  29  72    3   18  10  15  71     16   19  35 20   8 10   2   8


  1 2 Total
LOYOLA-MARYLAND
31
40
71
FLORIDA STATE
46
50
96
Attendance: 7,323

FLORIDA STATE 72, TULANE 53
12/10/2017, Tampa, Fl

From the FSU Website, seminoles.com.

Angola Scores 18 as FSU Men Rout Tulane.

TAMPA, FL — Braian Angola had 18 points and eight rebounds to lead Florida State to a 72-53 win over Tulane on Sunday.

Florida State (9-0) jumped out to a 21-7 lead midway through the first half after a 10-0 run. Tulane (7-3) answered with a 10-2 run to close to gap to 23-17 but the Seminoles scored the final six points of the half to take a 29-17 lead.Cameron Reynolds scored five straight for Tulane early in the second half to cut the deficit to eight but with Trent Forrest scoring back-to-back baskets, FSU scored five straight points to put the lead into double figures for good. After a Reynolds bucket the Seminoles put the game away with 10 straight, four from Forrest, to lead 52-31 with 10:25 to play.

Forrest and Terance Mann each had 12 points for the Seminoles.

Reynolds led the Green Wave with 16 points and 11 rebounds. Blake Paul added 12 points and eight rebounds but got into early foul trouble in the second half.

Tulane struggled from the floor, shooting 25 percent (7 for 28) in the first half and 36 percent (21 for 59) for the game.

Florida State got its offense rolling in the second half, shooting 58 percent (15 for 26) from the floor, including 5 of 9 behind the arc.

The Green Wave had 19 turnovers and Florida State scored 17 points off those mistakes.

The Seminoles bench outscored Tulane 33-15.

 
NO        NAME          GS MIN FGM FGA 3FGM 3FGA FTM FTA PTS   OREB DREB REB PF AST TO BLK STL
== ==================== == === === === ==== ==== === === ===   ==== ==== === == === == === ===
 0 Phil Cofer            f  31   2   8    0    2   0   1   4      2    6   8  2   2  2   0   0
 2 CJ Walker             g  27   1   8    0    4   1   3   3      0    3   3  3   1  1   1   1
11 Braian Angola         g  34   6  10    4    7   2   2  18      0    8   8  2   2  1   0   3
12 Ike Obiagu            c  12   1   1    0    0   0   1   2      1    3   4  1   0  0   3   1
14 Terance Mann          g  20   4   7    0    0   4   6  12      2    2   4  2   1  2   0   0
 3 Trent Forrest            24   5   6    0    1   2   3  12      5    1   6  1   4  2   0   4
 5 PJ Savoy                 11   2   5    2    4   0   0   6      0    2   2  1   0  1   0   0
23 MJ Walker                19   1   5    1    3   3   5   6      0    4   4  1   1  2   0   0
25 Mfiondu Kabengele        17   4   8    0    0   1   3   9      0    4   4  0   0  0   1   0
31 Wyatt Wilkes              1   0   0    0    0   0   0   0      0    0   0  0   0  0   0   0
40 Brandon Allen             4   0   0    0    0   0   0   0      0    0   0  1   0  2   0   0
   Team                                                                1   1                  
                     =========================================================================
   FSU                   5 200  26  58    7   21  13  24  72     10   34  44 14  11 13   5   9
   Opp                     200  21  59    7   22   4   8  53      8   30  38 20  12 19   0   4


  1 2 Total
FLORIDA STATE
29
43
72
TULANE
17
36
53
Attendance: 3,975

OKLAHOMA STATE 71, FLORIDA STATE 70
12/16/2017, Orange Bowl Classic, Sunrise, Fl

From the FSU Website, seminoles.com.

Basketball Suffers First Loss, 71-70, To Oklahoma State.

SUNRISE, FL – Mitchell Solomon scored on a tip-in with 6 seconds left and Oklahoma State knocked No. 19 Florida State from the unbeaten ranks Saturday in the Orange Bowl Classic.

Florida State went ahead on Terance Mann’s follow with 10 seconds remaining, but Oklahoma State needed only four seconds to go the length of the court to score for the 14th and final lead change.

Following a timeout, the Seminoles’ CJ Walker drove into the lane but collided with Solomon and was called for the foul, sealing the Cowboys’ win.

Florida State (9-1) missed a chance to match the best start to a season in school history. Oklahoma State (8-2) ended a streak of seven consecutive losses against ranked teams since February.

The Seminoles’ loss left only four unbeaten teams in Division I: Villanova, Arizona State, Miami and TCU.

“We’re in a conference where you can’t get caught up in streaks, because nobody in the ACC is going to go undefeated,” coach Leonard Hamilton said. “It doesn’t happen. Tonight we played against a team that played a little better than us.”

Oklahoma State forward Jeffrey Carroll said the final sequence starring Solomon at both ends of the court had a cinematic tinge.

“It almost felt like slow motion,” Carroll said, “like a movie almost.”

Boynton said he expected the Seminoles to drive to the lane on their final possession.

“We were just fortunate that Mitch knew the right play,” Boynton said. “He came over and gave up his body, sacrificed for his teammates and got our team a win.”

Solomon had 12 points and 11 rebounds. Carroll, a senior, made his first start of the season and scored 23 points to surpass 1,000 for his career, and was voted the game’s outstanding player.

Senior Phil Cofer scored a career-high 22 points for Florida State. Mann, a junior, had 20 points and a career-high 14 rebounds.

The Seminoles committed a season-high 22 turnovers against a variety of Oklahoma State defenses.

“They were extremely prepared,” Hamilton said. “They mixed the defenses up.”

 
NO        NAME          GS MIN FGM FGA 3FGM 3FGA FTM FTA PTS   OREB DREB REB PF AST TO BLK STL
== ==================== == === === === ==== ==== === === ===   ==== ==== === == === == === ===
 0 Phil Cofer            f  35   7  15    5    7   3   4  22      1    3   4  1   0  2   0   3
 2 CJ Walker             g  24   1   8    1    2   0   0   3      1    1   2  2   1  3   0   0
11 Braian Angola         g  19   1   6    0    3   4   6   6      2    2   4  4   3  3   0   2
12 Ike Obiagu            c  17   0   0    0    0   1   2   1      2    3   5  1   0  2   2   0
14 Terance Mann          g  37   9  15    0    0   2   2  20      6    8  14  1   2  3   0   2
 3 Trent Forrest            31   2   3    0    0   0   4   4      1    2   3  1   6  3   1   1
 5 PJ Savoy                  1   0   0    0    0   0   0   0      0    0   0  0   0  0   0   0
23 MJ Walker                17   0   3    0    2   2   2   2      0    3   3  1   0  2   1   2
25 Mfiondu Kabengele        19   4   8    0    1   4   4  12      2    2   4  4   0  4   3   0
   Team                                                                2   2                  
                     =========================================================================
   FSU                   5 200  24  58    6   15  16  24  70     15   26  41 15  12 22   7  10
   Opp                     200  27  70    9   28   8  10  71     14   23  37 20  17 17   3  10


  1 2 Total
FLORIDA STATE
38
32
70
OKLAHOMA STATE
34
37
71
Attendance: 9,152

FLORIDA STATE 69, CHARLESTON SOUTHERN 58
12/18/2017, TALLAHASSEE, FL

From the FSU Website, seminoles.com.

Surging Start To Second Half Pushes Home Streak To 26.

by Bob Thomas

TALLAHASSEE, FL – Playing at home for the first time 12 days, the 19th-ranked Florida State basketball team took the better part of 25 minutes to find its groove Monday night against Charleston Southern.

Coming off Saturday’s one-point loss to Oklahoma State in Sunrise, Fla., the Noles used a 25-7 run to start the second half to shake the Buccaneers and record their 26th consecutive victory at the Donald L. Tucker Center, 69-58.

“We’re still trying to find that magic level of consistency on how to execute offensively and defensively,” FSU coach Leonard Hamilton said, after the Noles moved to 10-1 on the year.

The Noles found some holiday magic with a virtually flawless start to the second half, turning a two-point lead into a 20-point bulge which the Buccaneers never seriously threatened. Freshman big man Ike Obiagu scored eight points, while Phil Cofer and Terance Mann contributed six each during the second half opening salvo.

FSU spread the wealth offensively by moving the ball and sharing it in spirit of the season, registering eight assists on their first 10 field goals of the second half.

“We shot almost 70 percent [in the second half] because we had a lot of possessions where we had five, six, seven, eight or nine passes and we got high percentage shots,” Hamilton said.

That wasn’t the case in the first half, which more closely resembled the early struggles against Tulane and the effort in the 71-70 loss to Oklahoma State.

What undoubtedly was a to-the-point halftime discussion in the Noles’ locker room clearly hit home.

“We know we have a great team of great shooters and moving the ball side-to-side with six-plus passes, we can get whatever we want,” said guard Braian Angola, who finished with 11 points and four assists. “In the first half we were not focused on that. That let them stay in the game. In the second half we executed the game plan.”

A switch to zone on the defensive end to start the second, with Obiagu defending the rim, didn’t hurt.

Charleston Southern (4-6) missed 11 of its first 13 shots. Christian Keeling (21 points) opened the second half with a 3-pointer and by the time Travis McConico (17 points) hit the Bucs’ second field goal of the half – with 13:22 remaining – the Noles were in command, 46-33.

“For seven or eight minutes, that zone just shook us,” Bucs’ coach Barclay Radebaugh said. “If you take away seven or eight minutes when we couldn’t attack a zone, it could have been even closer.”

“It helped keep them out of our paint,” Mann said of the zone defense. “Our goal at halftime was to get into their paint and keep them out of our paint. It definitely worked. The zone helped us with it.”

Florida State outscored its under-sized opponents 40-18 in the paint, where Obiagu looked quite at home, blocking three shots and altering a half-dozen or so others. And it didn’t hurt that, on the heels of a season-high 22 turnovers on Saturday, that the Noles didn’t have a single turnover in the first 13 minutes of the second half.

Valuing possession of the basketball and sharing it were clearly priority items for the Noles, who turned it over only 11 times and registered 21 assists on 27 field goals.

“That’s pretty good,” Hamilton said. “We’re capable of doing that. We’re fighting to get to that magic level…We’ve got to extend that level of efficiency throughout the whole game.”

Cofer followed up his career-high 22-point performance on Saturday with 19 points and six rebounds, while Mann added 17 points, a game-high seven assists and grabbed six rebounds. CJ Walker and Obiagu finished with eight points each.

The night certainly didn’t begin the way it ended for the Noles, who were left clinging to a 28-26 halftime lead after the Bucs closed the half on a 6-0 run following Mann’s driving layup with 3:29 remaining.

It could have been worse. The Noles scored 15 points off 12 Charleston Southern turnovers, but managed just three second-chance points – and one offensive rebound – as the Bucs doubled them up on the glass, 24-12.

 
NO        NAME          GS MIN FGM FGA 3FGM 3FGA FTM FTA PTS   OREB DREB REB PF AST TO BLK STL
== ==================== == === === === ==== ==== === === ===   ==== ==== === == === == === ===
 0 Phil Cofer            f  33   7  11    1    3   4   4  19      1    5   6  0   2  1   2   1
 2 CJ Walker             g  30   3   8    2    6   0   0   8      0    1   1  1   3  2   0   2
11 Braian Angola         g  23   4   6    1    2   2   3  11      0    2   2  1   4  1   0   3
12 Ike Obiagu            c  25   3   4    0    0   2   4   8      2    3   5  3   1  2   3   1
14 Terance Mann          g  33   8  11    0    1   1   3  17      1    5   6  3   7  1   1   2
 3 Trent Forrest            26   1   2    0    0   1   3   3      0    3   3  1   1  2   0   1
 5 PJ Savoy                  9   1   6    1    4   0   0   3      0    0   0  1   0  1   0   0
23 MJ Walker                18   0   4    0    3   0   0   0      0    0   0  1   2  1   0   0
40 Brandon Allen             3   0   0    0    0   0   0   0      0    0   0  0   1  0   0   0
   Team                                                                3   3                  
                     =========================================================================
   FSU                   5 200  27  52    5   19  10  17  69      4   22  26 11  21 11   6  10
   Opp                     200  21  58    8   19   8  10  58     15   24  39 14   8 20   1   5


  1 2 Total
CHARLESTON SOUTHERN
26
32
58
FLORIDA STATE
28
41
69
Attendance: 5,836

FLORIDA STATE 98, SOUTHERN MISSISSIPPI 45
12/21/2017, TALLAHASSEE, FL

From the FSU Website, seminoles.com.

Hot-Shooting Noles Dominate Southern Miss, 98-45.

by Tim Linafelt, Senior Writer

TALLAHASSEE, FL – Leonard Hamilton did things a little differently after Florida State’s win over Charleston Southern earlier this week.

Rather than have his assistants break down film and prepare the post-game report, he instead put that responsibility on his players.

And despite having overcome a slow start to emerge with a double-digit win, they didn’t always like what they saw.

“It showed a lot of mistakes, a lot of things we could have done better defensively and offensively,” sophomore guard Trent Forest said. “It’s a totally different view. You can see ‘I didn’t do this – why didn’t I do this?’ … It gave us a totally different perspective.”

Turns out a fresh perspective might have been just what FSU needed. Because after back-to-back games that left them feeling unsatisfied, the Seminoles looked like a fresh, renewed team during a 98-45 rout of Southern Mississippi on Thursday afternoon at the Donald L. Tucker Center.

FSU (11-1) shot better than 56 percent from the field, fell one 3-pointer shy of a school record and outrebounded the Golden Eagles 42-28.

It was the Seminoles’ second win over Southern Miss (7-5) in as many seasons, having topped USM 98-49 on Dec. 6, 2016.

“It seems like just a little over a year ago I was kind of in this same situation and told you I’d probably never be back,” Southern Miss coach Doc Sadler said. “Well, I can promise you I won’t be after this. Wow. Leonard’s got such a good basketball team and, where we’re at, it’s just too tough for us.”

The Seminoles flexed their muscles up and down the court on Thursday, but did most of their heavy lifting from the 3-point line.

Paced by a breakout performance from junior sharpshooter P.J. Savoy, FSU was a staggering 19 of 36 from the perimeter and would have tied a 10-year-old school record for made 3s had Will Miles connected on buzzer-beater at the end of the game.

Savoy did all of his damage from distance, finishing 5 of 10 from the field and with game-highs in points (17) and rebounds (7).

On a day when pretty much everything went right for FSU, seeing Savoy break out of a mini-slump – he’d scored in double-figures just once this season – might have been the most encouraging sign.

“It was great to see PJ back,” senior guard Braian Angola said. “He’s going to be scary the rest of the year.”

The same might go for Forrest, who did a little bit of everything against the Golden Eagles. He had seven points, six rebounds and an ACC-high 12 assists in only 18 minutes of work.

For coach Leonard Hamilton, it was the latest sign that Forrest has returned to form after working his way back from a preseason knee injury.

“He has such a winner’s mentality,” Hamilton said. “All he wants to do is make the right decision to help us win games, and I thought you saw a lot of that today. He passed up a lot of shots to create opportunities for his teammates.”

Those teammates made the most of their chances.

Freshmen MJ Walker (5 for 7) and Mfiondu Kabengele (5 for 5) combined for 27 points, while Cofer and Angola each added nine.

And as the Seminoles’ lead ballooned in the second half, Hamilton emptied his bench andwhich allowed 13 different players to find the scoresheet. Seldom-used reserves Wyatt Wilkes, Justin Lindner, Harrison Prieto, Travis Light and Will Miles then closed out the final three minutes of the game.

Light thrilled the crowd, his teammates and even USM’s Sadler by knocking down back-to-back 3-pointers, while Prieto added a layup that pushed the Seminoles to their second-highest point total of the season.

“The only thing positive, I guess, that I can take away from here is to see their bench get so excited for the guys that don’t get to play very much,” Sadler said. “That’s special. When you’ve got guys over there in the last two or three minutes and their teammates are really cheering (them) on because those guys don’t get to play much, that tells me that they’ve got an unbelievable culture. They’re pulling for each other. And, as a coach, that’s kind of neat.”

Hamilton found plenty more positives, but chief among them was that the Seminoles were dialed in and focused for a full game.

Given that FSU’s non-conference slate is over and a date at No. 4 Duke lies ahead on Dec. 30, that might turn out to be the longtime coach’s favorite Christmas gift this year.

“Today, we were consistent for 40 minutes,” Hamilton said. “While we’re still a work in progress, today is one of those days I thought we took a step in the right direction.”

 
NO        NAME          GS MIN FGM FGA 3FGM 3FGA FTM FTA PTS   OREB DREB REB PF AST TO BLK STL
== ==================== == === === === ==== ==== === === ===   ==== ==== === == === == === ===
 0 Phil Cofer            f  21   4   6    1    2   0   0   9      0    4   4  1   2  1   0   0
 2 CJ Walker             g  18   2   3    0    1   0   0   4      0    5   5  1   3  1   0   0
11 Braian Angola         g  16   3   6    3    5   0   0   9      1    1   2  1   1  4   0   1
12 Ike Obiagu            c  19   3   5    0    0   0   0   6      3    2   5  1   0  3   4   0
14 Terance Mann          g  18   2   5    0    1   0   0   4      0    2   2  0   2  1   0   1
 3 Trent Forrest            18   2   4    0    0   3   3   7      0    6   6  0  12  2   0   3
 5 PJ Savoy                 19   5  10    5   10   2   3  17      0    7   7  0   1  1   0   0
15 Justin Lindner            4   0   1    0    0   0   0   0      0    0   0  1   2  0   0   0
20 Travis Light              3   2   3    2    3   0   0   6      0    0   0  0   0  0   0   0
23 MJ Walker                21   5   9    5    8   0   0  15      0    0   0  1   2  1   0   1
25 Mfiondu Kabengele        14   5   5    2    2   0   0  12      0    2   2  0   0  2   0   0
31 Wyatt Wilkes             13   1   3    0    2   0   0   2      1    2   3  1   1  0   1   0
33 Will Miles                3   0   1    0    1   0   0   0      0    1   1  0   0  0   0   0
35 Harrison Prieto           3   1   2    0    0   0   0   2      0    0   0  0   1  0   0   0
40 Brandon Allen            10   2   3    1    1   0   0   5      1    2   3  1   0  0   0   0
   Team                                                           1    1   2                  
                     =========================================================================
   FSU                   5 200  37  66   19   36   5   6  98      7   35  42  8  27 16   5   6
   Opp                     200  18  61    4   24   5   6  45      7   21  28  7  10 20   0   9


  1 2 Total
SOUTHERN MISSISSIPPI
21
24
45
FLORIDA STATE
47
51
98
Attendance: 5,003

DUKE 100, FLORIDA STATE 93
12/30/2017, DURHAM, NC

From the FSU Website, seminoles.com.

No. 24 Noles Fall In Thriller at No. 4 Duke

DURHAM, NC — Marvin Bagley III and Wendell Carter Jr. kept cleaning up plenty of misses for No. 4 Duke. Florida State had no way to stop them, especially down the stretch when the Seminoles’ shots stopped falling.

Bagley had 32 points and a season-best 21 rebounds, and the Blue Devils pulled away to beat No. 24 Florida State 100-93 on Saturday.

Fellow freshman Carter added 14 points and a season-high 16 rebounds, Grayson Allen scored 22 points and Trevon Duval scored 11 of his 16 in the second half to help the Blue Devils (13-1, 1-1 Atlantic Coast Conference) win a back-and-forth game that had 14 lead changes and the feel of March.

“We couldn’t stop each other,” coach Mike Krzyzewski said, “and the will to score and will to win was evident every second from both teams. For us to win that game is sensational for our group.”

Phil Cofer scored a career-high 28 points and Braian Angola finished with a career-best 23 for the Seminoles (11-2, 0-1), who shot nearly 45 percent and hit 15 3-pointers. Angola’s 3 with just under 4 minutes remaining put them up 91-89, but they missed their final eight shots — six of which came from long range.

“I thought our kids were connected. We just didn’t have an answer for keeping Bagley and Carter off the glass,” coach Leonard Hamilton said. “They are such good athletes and have such great hands and timing and strength. … That made the difference in the game. When you have two guys like that, they make up for misses.”

Bagley and Carter combined for 37 rebounds — two more than the entire Seminoles team — and they helped Duke impose its will inside when it counted most. Of Duke’s final 12 field goals during the last 10 1/2 minutes, all but one were layups or dunks.

Duval and Carter teamed to make several key plays down the stretch for the Blue Devils, with Krzyzewski saying he told Duval that “we’re not going to call a play. Just go. And he went.”

Duval hit a twisting layup that tied it at 93 with about 3 minutes left, then found an uncovered Carter underneath a possession later for the go-ahead dunk.

Carter — playing with four fouls — then drew a key charge on Trent Forrest on Florida State’s next trip downcourt and Duval hit on another acrobatic drive two possessions later to make it 97-93 and make it a two-possession game to stay.

“I was just in the moment where I saw him driving at me, and during the scouting report, I knew he wasn’t going to stop on a dime or dish it over,” Carter said. “So I just stepped over and hoped the referee was on my side.”

BIG PICTURE

Florida State: The Seminoles received no favors from the ACC’s schedule-maker. They could open league play with three straight losses yet still have a strong case for a Top 25 ranking because their first three league opponents are Duke, No. 13 North Carolina and No. 15 Miami. They put themselves in position for their second victory at Cameron Indoor Stadium in the past decade — but it slipped away during that untimely cold spell.

Duke: The nation’s fourth-ranked team is no longer in the ACC’s cellar, but had to work awfully hard to escape it. The Blue Devils struggled from long range, shooting just 26.7 percent from beyond the arc, but made up for it by scoring 56 points in the paint, thanks in large part to Bagley and Carter.

STAR WATCH

Cofer surpassed his career high in the first half, scoring 22 points by halftime. His last field goal — a 3-pointer from the corner — came with about 15 1/2 minutes remaining. “He didn’t force any shots,” Hamilton said. “Other guys got momentum and produced. … The ball just didn’t come to him.”

SHOT OF THE NIGHT

Bagley missed a free throw with 8:44 remaining but grabbed the rebound in the lane and put up a shot through contact from Angola that spun off the top of the backboard and dropped through. Bagley hit the free throw that followed to put Duke up 78-74.

 
NO        NAME          GS MIN FGM FGA 3FGM 3FGA FTM FTA PTS   OREB DREB REB PF AST TO BLK STL
== ==================== == === === === ==== ==== === === ===   ==== ==== === == === == === ===
 0 Phil Cofer            f  36  11  16    6   10   0   2  28      2    4   6  1   0  1   0   1
 2 CJ Walker             g  20   3   9    1    2   0   0   7      0    2   2  5   5  0   0   0
11 Braian Angola         g  32   7  17    5   12   4   5  23      1    7   8  4   3  0   0   0
12 Ike Obiagu            c  13   1   4    0    0   0   0   2      2    0   2  2   0  3   2   0
14 Terance Mann          g  31   2   6    1    1   4   4   9      2    4   6  3   5  4   0   2
 3 Trent Forrest            24   1   1    0    0   2   2   4      0    6   6  3   5  3   0   0
 5 PJ Savoy                  4   0   1    0    1   0   0   0      0    0   0  1   1  0   0   0
23 MJ Walker                21   4  10    2    5   0   0  10      0    0   0  1   2  0   0   0
25 Mfiondu Kabengele        19   2   5    0    1   6   9  10      1    2   3  2   1  0   0   0
   Team                                                           1    1   2  1               
                     =========================================================================
   FSU                   5 200  31  69   15   32  16  22  93      9   26  35 23  22 11   2   3
   Opp                     200  39  83    8   30  14  25 100     23   30  53 21  19  9   5   6


  1 2 Total
FLORIDA STATE
49
44
93
DUKE
45
55
100
Attendance: 9,314

FLORIDA STATE 81, NORTH CAROLINA 80
01/03/2018, TALLAHASSEE, FL

From the FSU Website, seminoles.com.

No. 24 Noles Hold Off No. 12 Heels in 81-80 Triumph.

by Tim Linafelt, Senior Writer

TALLAHASSEE, FL – Leonard Hamilton’s day began in an operating room, where he had surgery to remove kidney stones.

But by Wednesday night, any lingering pain – and yes, it has been a painful two days for the longtime Florida State men’s basketball coach – was mostly just a memory.

Wins over North Carolina have a way of making things better.

Braian Angola scored 20 points and C.J. Walker added 18 as the No. 24 Seminoles jumped out to a big lead, then held on late for an 81-80 victory over the 12th-ranked Tar Heels in front of 8,931 fans at the Donald L. Tucker Center.

“The last 36 hours have been a little tough on me,” Hamilton said with a laugh. “Kidney stones, they’re not very enjoyable. They can create some pain for you. But that’s OK. This makes the pain worth it.”

Which isn’t to say that Hamilton wasn’t still holding his breath in the game’s final moments.

After UNC’s Joel Berry hit a 3-pointer that cut FSU’s deficit to one with 30 seconds to play, the Seminoles missed four straight free throws that could have effectively sealed their win.

Not until the Tar Heels’ desperate, half-court heave fell harmlessly away could Hamilton and the Seminoles finally exhale.

But when they did, they were left with several things to feel good about: Their 28th consecutive win at home, their second win over a ranked opponent (FSU won at then-No. 5 Florida in November), their first win against North Carolina in nearly six years and a 1-1 record in ACC play after starting the slate with Duke and UNC.

The Seminoles next visit No. 15 Miami on Sunday (6 p.m., ESPNU).

“I thought we kind of grew up a little,” Hamilton said. “Had we not got the stops and gotten big rebounds and executed on the defensive and offensive end at the same time, it would’ve been very difficult to pull this out.”

But they did, thanks in large part to a torrid shooting effort in the first half, and some serious resolve in the second.

With Angola and sophomore CJ Walker leading the way, the Seminoles shot 9-for-20 from 3-point range in the first half and carried a 51-40 lead into the break.

Hamilton, however, said he expected the Tar Heels to make a run in the second half, and they proved him right by scoring 16 of the period’s first 23 points to tie the game at 58-58 with 12:59 to play.

UNC claimed the lead a few moments later and seemed on the verge of running away with a game that moments earlier might have been a rout in the other direction.

That’s when the Seminoles huddled for a timeout that may prove to be one of the pivotal moments of their young season.

“I thought our guys really came together,” Hamilton said. “Their body language changed in the timeout. They were calling each other out. Holding each other accountable. … That’s what you like to see from a team as young as ours.”

Added CJ Walker: “We can get on each other and still not let it affect us. They made a run but our team called each other out, told what we had to do. And we executed.”

Walker led the way as the Seminoles and Tar Heels traded baskets down the stretch.

First by diving to the floor and tipping a loose ball to Trent Forrest, who threw down a heavy dunk that made it 67-65 and brought the crowd to its feet.

And then by scoring seven of FSU’s next 10 points as the Seminoles rebuilt their lead to as much as 76-69.

“CJ is a warrior. We all know that,” Hamilton said. “He plays with a little bit of a chip on his shoulder. He represents the way we like to play: Good, clean, hard-nosed, tough basketball. … For the most part, I thought the entire team, during a period there in the second half, when the game was on the line, played with CJ’s tenacity.”

While Hamilton lamented another outing in which the Seminoles were outrebounded – a sore spot in Saturday’s loss at Duke – he also pointed out that FSU got defensive stops and rebounds during crucial moments.

Most notably in the final seconds, when Terance Mann gathered a miss from UNC’s Berry that would have put the Tar Heels on top. Or moments earlier, when Mann and Forrest grabbed rebounds that helped keep UNC at arm’s length.

That made the Tar Heels’ 41-37 advantage on the glass, as well as their 17 offensive boards, a little easier to swallow.

“We got the timely rebounds that we had to have during the critical portion of the game,” Hamilton said. “And I thought that made the difference.”

When Tar Heels coach Roy Williams arrived at his press conference, a UNC official told gathered media that Williams was feeling under the weather and asked if his question-and-answer session could be kept short.

But Williams, with a bit of a catch in his voice, refused to take the easy way out.

“We also got our tails beat,” he said. “So that’s another reason to keep it short.”

Besides, given what his counterpart on the FSU sideline had been through earlier in the day, Williams wasn’t about to ask for any sympathy.

“As bad as I feel, I still didn’t have surgery this morning,” Williams said. “Leonard had surgery. So he’s tougher than I am.”

 
NO        NAME          GS MIN FGM FGA 3FGM 3FGA FTM FTA PTS   OREB DREB REB PF AST TO BLK STL
== ==================== == === === === ==== ==== === === ===   ==== ==== === == === == === ===
 0 Phil Cofer            f  27   2  11    1    5   0   2   5      1    3   4  1   0  0   0   0
 2 CJ Walker             g  23   6   9    4    6   2   3  18      0    3   3  1   2  5   0   1
11 Braian Angola         g  32   6  10    3    7   5   5  20      2    3   5  2   2  2   0   2
12 Ike Obiagu            c  10   1   1    0    0   0   0   2      0    1   1  1   0  0   2   0
14 Terance Mann          g  33   6  10    1    3   4   7  17      3    6   9  0   5  3   1   1
 3 Trent Forrest            26   3   5    0    1   3   4   9      1    3   4  1   1  2   0   0
 5 PJ Savoy                  3   0   0    0    0   0   0   0      0    0   0  1   0  0   0   0
23 MJ Walker                22   3   7    1    4   0   1   7      0    2   2  1   0  1   0   0
25 Mfiondu Kabengele        23   1   4    1    3   0   0   3      0    5   5  1   0  1   2   0
40 Brandon Allen             1   0   0    0    0   0   0   0      0    0   0  0   0  1   0   0
   Team                                                           1    3   4                  
                     =========================================================================
   FSU                   5 200  28  57   11   29  14  22  81      8   29  37  9  10 15   5   4
   Opp                     200  31  77   11   29   7   9  80     17   24  41 18  18  7   1   8


  1 2 Total
NORTH CAROLINA
40
40
80
FLORIDA STATE
51
30
81
Attendance: 8,931

MIAMI 80, FLORIDA STATE 74
01/07/2018, CORAL GABLES, FL

From the FSU Website, seminoles.com.

FSU Men Rally, Run Out Of Time At Miami.

CORAL GABLES, FL — Miami 5-foot-7 freshman Chris Lykes scored a season-high 18 points, and the No. 15 Hurricanes withstood a late rally by No. 24 Florida State to win 80-74 on Sunday.

Bruce Brown scored a season-high 23 points and Dewan Huell had 20 points and eight rebounds for the Hurricanes, who took the lead for good in the early minutes and made 13 of their first 14 shots.

Miami (13-2, 2-1 Atlantic Coast Conference) won at home for the first time since Dec. 5. The Seminoles (12-3, 1-2) lost for the third time in their past six games.

Florida State cut a 16-point second-half deficit to four with 24 seconds left. Braian Angola then made a backcourt steal but missed a 3-pointer that would have left the Seminoles trailing by one.

Brown made five of six free throws in the final 45 seconds and finished 12-for-14 at the line.

Angola had 16 points for Florida State, which shot a season-low 36 percent. Miami, ranked second nationally in scoring defense, held the Seminoles below their season average of 85.4.

Even a hand to the face couldn’t stop Lykes, who was hit as he made a basket — with no foul called — and briefly had to leave the game.

The acrobatic guard made two highlight plays in the first half. He drove into the lane and scooped in a shot from knee level, and in the final seconds he weaved past two defenders for a reverse layup to give Miami its largest lead of the half, 45-32.

His jumper to beat the shot clock with 4 minutes left slowed Florida State’s rally.

SLUMPING WALKER
Highly touted Hurricanes freshman Lonnie Walker IV started for only the second time this season, but that didn’t help him shake a slump. He hit a 3-pointer on the game’s first possession but finished with only five points in 15 minutes.

BIG PICTURE
The Hurricanes beat a ranked team for the second time this season. They won at then-No. 12 Minnesota on Nov. 29.

The Seminoles, who made 45 3-pointers in their three previous games, went 5 for 24 from beyond the arc.

 
NO        NAME          GS MIN FGM FGA 3FGM 3FGA FTM FTA PTS   OREB DREB REB PF AST TO BLK STL
== ==================== == === === === ==== ==== === === ===   ==== ==== === == === == === ===
 0 Phil Cofer            f  32   5  13    1    5   0   0  11      1    3   4  3   0  2   0   1
 2 CJ Walker             g  15   0   5    0    3   0   0   0      1    4   5  1   2  1   0   1
11 Braian Angola         g  35   6  16    1    6   3   3  16      2    3   5  3   4  4   0   5
12 Ike Obiagu            c   9   1   1    0    0   0   2   2      0    1   1  2   0  0   1   0
14 Terance Mann          g  25   3   7    1    2   3   4  10      1    3   4  3   1  1   0   0
 3 Trent Forrest            30   2   7    0    3   8  10  12      2    3   5  0   3  1   0   2
 5 PJ Savoy                  2   1   2    1    2   0   0   3      0    0   0  0   0  0   0   0
21 Christ Koumadje          13   2   6    0    0   1   2   5      6    2   8  4   0  2   1   0
23 MJ Walker                19   3   8    1    3   0   0   7      0    0   0  5   0  0   0   1
25 Mfiondu Kabengele        18   2   4    0    0   2   5   6      8    4  12  1   0  4   3   1
40 Brandon Allen             2   0   0    0    0   0   0   0      0    0   0  0   0  0   0   0
   Team                          1                         2                                  
                     =========================================================================
   FSU                   5 200  26  69    5   24  17  26  74     21   23  44 22  10 15   5  11
   Opp                     200  26  51    5   16  23  32  80      5   27  32 20  15 15   2   6


  1 2 Total
FLORIDA STATE
32
42
74
MIAMI
45
35
80
Attendance: 7,647

LOUISVILLE 73, FLORIDA STATE 69
01/10/2018, TALLAHASSEE, FL

From the FSU Website, seminoles.com.

Not In The Cards: Louisville Snaps Home Streak At 28.

by Bob Thomas

TALLAHASSEE, FL – Chilly shooting, poor ball security and an inspired second half defensive effort by the visitors put an end to Florida State’s 28-game home winning streak Wednesday night at the Donald L. Tucker Center.

Charging back from a 13-point halftime deficit, Louisville recorded its first true road win of the season, 73-69 before a crowd of 10,604.

The Cardinals (12-4, 2-1 ACC) made all the plays that mattered most in the closing minutes after reserve guard Ryan McMahon drilled a 3-pointer to give Louisville its first lead of the night, 64-62 with 4:53 to play. McMahon, who had 11 points off the bench, fed Anas Mahmound for a dunk and a 68-63 lead before a nearly 20-minute delay with 2:34 remaining as arena officials worked to repair the net at FSU’s end of the floor.

“I was saying if we lose this one due to the delay, I’ve seen it all,” said Louisville coach David Padgett, who praised his team’s resilience in the face of 13-point halftime deficit and coming off a difficult overtime loss at Clemson.

Coming out of the delay the Noles (12-4, 1-3) twice cut the deficit to two points on a pair of long Braian Angola 3-pointers, which snapped FSU’s 0-for-8 shooting performance in the second half from beyond the arc. Twice the Noles had the ball with a chance to tie the game or take the lead, only to be denied.

Mahmound blocked four shots in the final 1:26 to turn back FSU’s last threats. McMahon sealed the outcome with two free throws and 1.5 seconds on the clock.

“We lost a very disappointing game,” Leonard Hamilton said. “We made some untimely turnovers that Louisville was able to take advantage of.”

The Seminoles turned the ball over nine time on 32 second half possessions and shot just 30 percent from the floor (8-of-26).

Terance Mann matched his career high with 25 points, including 15 in the second half, when he virtually carried the Noles on his back through their shooting woes against Louisville’s 2-3 zone defense. At one point late in half Mann had 11 of FSU’s 13 points.

“Normally zones don’t give us too much trouble, especially this year, but it did,” Mann said.”It only did because they were hitting their shots and we were coming down and just standing there. We weren’t being aggressive enough. It’s just a learning experience.”

Angola finished with 18 for the Noles, who now face a pivotal home game Saturday against Syracuse at 2 p.m.

“Every game in the ACC is big, but this one, we’ve got to get it,” Mann said.

The Seminoles seemed ready to put their 80-74 Sunday loss at Miami behind them, rushing out to an early nine-point lead against the Cardinals, who managed to pull even, but could not get over the hump. FSU seemingly seized control of the game with a 13-0 run following the under-eight-minute media timeout as the Cardinals endured nearly six minutes of scoreless basketball and trailed 45-32 at the half.

FSU converted 5 of 7 field goal attempts – three of the high percentage dunk variety – during the run and forced three Louisville turnovers, converting those into six points.

Ironically, FSU’s run was spurred by its switch to a zone defense which seemed to compound the Cardinals’ first half shooting woes from beyond the arc (2-of-11). It began innocently enough with a pair of M.J. Walker free throws for a 31-26 lead. The onslaught began in earnest with Phil Cofer’s banked 3-pointer.

Back-to-back Mfiondu Kabengale baskets – the second off a behind-the-back feed from Walker – made it 38-26 and Terance Mann’s runout dunk pushed the margin to 14.

The Noles led by as many as 17 after a Mann 3-pointer with 1:32 to play in the half.

Balance was key to the Noles at the offensive end as Angola led the way with 11, Mann added 10 and Christ Koumadje pitched in eight off the FSU bench, which out-produced the Cardinals 19-6 over the first 20 minutes.

 
NO        NAME          GS MIN FGM FGA 3FGM 3FGA FTM FTA PTS   OREB DREB REB PF AST TO BLK STL
== ==================== == === === === ==== ==== === === ===   ==== ==== === == === == === ===
 0 Phil Cofer            f  29   1  10    1    5   0   0   3      3    7  10  1   1  1   0   0
 2 CJ Walker             g  27   0   3    0    2   0   0   0      0    4   4  2   2  2   1   1
11 Braian Angola         g  28   6  13    4    7   2   3  18      2    3   5  1   2  4   2   1
12 Ike Obiagu            c   5   1   1    0    0   0   0   2      0    0   0  0   0  2   1   0
14 Terance Mann          g  34   9  14    2    2   5   8  25      4    4   8  1   2  2   0   0
 3 Trent Forrest            17   0   4    0    0   0   0   0      0    2   2  2   2  1   0   1
 5 PJ Savoy                  7   1   4    1    4   0   0   3      0    1   1  1   0  0   0   0
21 Christ Koumadje          22   4   5    0    0   0   0   8      5    4   9  0   0  0   0   0
23 MJ Walker                18   2   7    0    4   2   2   6      0    0   0  2   2  1   0   0
25 Mfiondu Kabengele        13   2   4    0    0   0   0   4      2    1   3  5   0  1   0   1
   Team                                                           3        3                  
                     =========================================================================
   FSU                   5 200  26  65    8   24   9  13  69     19   26  45 15  11 14   4   4
   Opp                     200  27  64    8   24  11  15  73     13   21  34 14  16  8   8   5


  1 2 Total
LOUISVILLE
32
41
73
FLORIDA STATE
45
24
69
Attendance: 10,604

FLORIDA STATE 101, SYRACUSE 90
01/13/2018, TALLAHASSEE, FL, 2OT

From the FSU Website, seminoles.com.

Perseverance Pays Off In Double-OT Win Over Orange.

by Bob Thomas

TALLAHASSEE, FL – Staring a potential three-game losing streak and a 1-4 start to the ACC season in the eye, No. 23 Florida State prevailed against Syracuse, 101-90 in double-overtime on a Saturday afternoon when things could have gone so badly.

Christ Koumadje scored a career-high 23 points and Braian Angola added 24 and a career-best eight assists as the Seminoles (13-4, 2-3) pulled away, limiting the Orange to two field goals in the second overtime.

Syracuse (12-6, 1-4) suffered its fourth consecutive defeat and remains winless on the road in conference play, much to the delight of an energized Donald L. Tucker Center crowd of 10,938.

“The game was just as important to them as it was to us,” said FSU coach Leonard Hamilton, whose Noles beat Syracuse for just the third time in 10 meetings. “I thought both teams fought very hard. We just kind of hung on a little longer and were able to pull it out.”

The odds were certainly stacked against the Seminoles.

“I thought we battled,” Hamilton said. “They did too. We energized ourselves and gave tremendous effort like the game really meant something to us as a team, and I was glad to see our guys in a fighting mode the entire second half.”

In the ebb and flow of a game awash with early-season ramifications, the Noles were repeatedly up to the task. The decision to station Angola in center of Syracuse’s zone seemed to make all the difference as the junior repeatedly found Koumadje for lob dunks. He complemented his generosity by draining three 3-pointers and converting 8-of-9 free throw attempts from halftime to the finish.

It was Angola’s final 3-pointer, with 2:48 remaining in the second overtime, which gave the Noles a 93-84 lead that the Orange simply could not overcome.

Angola not only delivered on the floor, but said the Noles were hanging tough together, in the face of Syracuse’s big second half run.

“We were talking coming into the huddle and said, ‘Say together, keep chopping and keep doing what we’re doing and get the ball in the middle and we’re going to be fine,’” Angola said. “It was big for us.”

There was no shortage of contributors as the Noles had five double-figure scorers. In addition to Angola, Koumadje and Savoy, senior Phil Cofer pitched in 16 points – including a huge 3-pointer with 27 seconds remaining in regulation – to go along with eight rebounds. Mifondu Kabengele added 11 points and helped the Noles to a commanding 45-9 advantage in bench points.

Guard Trent Forrest led the Noles with 11 rebounds, added seven assists and forced the second overtime with his drive to the basket to forge an 82-82 deadlock.

“This game…everybody stepped up,” Cofer said. “That’s what we’re going to need. We’re going to need everybody no matter what. Our depth this year is great for us.”

From Forest, Savoy and CJ Walker (nine points, three steals, five rebounds), to the scoring leaders, Hamilton had no trouble identifying the contributors, who gave the Noles some much-needed momentum heading into a quick turnaround for Monday’s game at Boston College.

“Sometimes you need games like this to challenge you, to reach deep down inside to try and overcome some challenges,” Hamilton said. “I thought our guys stayed connected and the comments that came out of their mouths were very positive, which you like to see.”

 
NO        NAME          GS MIN FGM FGA 3FGM 3FGA FTM FTA PTS   OREB DREB REB PF AST TO BLK STL
== ==================== == === === === ==== ==== === === ===   ==== ==== === == === == === ===
 0 Phil Cofer            f  45   5  11    2    7   4   5  16      5    3   8  1   2  1   0   1
 2 CJ Walker             g  33   2   7    0    4   5   6   9      1    4   5  3   2  4   0   3
 3 Trent Forrest         g  40   3  10    0    0   1   2   7      5    6  11  4   7  3   1   0
11 Braian Angola         g  46   6  16    4    8   8   9  24      2    3   5  4   8  3   0   1
12 Ike Obiagu            c   6   0   1    0    0   0   0   0      0    1   1  0   0  0   0   0
 5 PJ Savoy                 17   4  11    3    8   0   0  11      1    0   1  2   1  0   0   0
21 Christ Koumadje          35   9  14    0    0   5  10  23      6    2   8  4   0  0   4   0
23 MJ Walker                14   0   3    0    1   0   0   0      2    0   2  3   3  2   0   0
25 Mfiondu Kabengele        14   4   9    2    4   1   2  11      0    4   4  4   0  1   0   2
40 Brandon Allen             0   0   0    0    0   0   0   0      0    0   0  0   0  0   0   1
   Team                                                           1    4   5         1        
                     =========================================================================
   FSU                   5 250  33  82   11   32  24  34 101     23   27  50 25  23 15   5   8
   Opp                     250  26  67    8   17  30  38  90     15   28  43 27   8 19   2  10


  1 2 OT 2-OT Total
SYRACUSE
21
53
8
8
90
FLORIDA STATE
31
43
8
19
101
Attendance: 10,938

BOSTON COLLEGE 81, FLORIDA STATE 75
01/15/2018, CHESTNUT HILL, MA

From the FSU Website, seminoles.com.

Mann Scores 21 As FSU Men Fall Short At BC.

CHESTNUT HILL, MA — Ky Bowman scored 19 points and grabbed 13 rebounds, Jerome Robinson also had 19 points and Boston College beat Florida State 81-75 on Monday night.

Nik Popovic and Jordan Chatman each added 14 points and Steffon Mitchell had 13 with nine boards for the Eagles (13-6, 3-3 Atlantic Coast Conference).

Terance Mann scored 21 points, CJ Walker 19 and Braian Angola 17 for Florida State (13-5, 2-4). The Seminoles lost for the third time in four games. They had won their last six meetings against BC.

The Eagles led by 16 at halftime and pushed it to 21 early in the second half.

Switching to zone midway into the opening half, the Eagles’ defense flustered the Seminoles, causing rushed shots from the outside and many contested misses in the lane.

Chatman nailed consecutive 3s just over a minute apart, capping an Eagles’ 12-0 run late in the half that carried them to a 41-25 edge at intermission.

BC then scored the first five points of the second half — with Bowman hitting a 3 from the left wing — and opened its largest lead of the game.

The Eagles maintained a double-digit lead until the final five minutes when it was sliced to seven. The Seminoles had it down to five in the closing minute, but Robinson and Bowman each hit free throws to seal it.

BIG PICTURE

Florida State: The Seminoles fell out of the Top 25 this week after being in there the previous five, but the bigger problem may be the lack of confidence they could be facing after another loss. Last week, they had their 28-game home winning streak snapped by Louisville on Wednesday before edging Syracuse in double-overtime Saturday.

Boston College: The Eagles’ growth continues in the ACC. They have surpassed the total number of league wins they had combined the previous two seasons.

LONG-RANGE MATCHUP

The game featured two of the ACC’s top three teams in shots made from 3-point range. Florida State (9.3) came in leading the conference and BC (8.6) was third.

The Eagles won on this night, though, going 9 for 23; while the Seminoles were 5 of 26 after missing eight of nine in the first half.

LINEUP

Florida State guard PJ Savoy missed the game with a knee injury, but leading scorer Mann returned after being out the previous one with a concussion.

ROUGH START

The Seminoles shot just 25.6 percent (10 of 39) in the opening 20 minutes.

 
NO        NAME          GS MIN FGM FGA 3FGM 3FGA FTM FTA PTS   OREB DREB REB PF AST TO BLK STL
== ==================== == === === === ==== ==== === === ===   ==== ==== === == === == === ===
 0 Phil Cofer            f  33   1   8    1    5   2   2   5      1    8   9  4   1  2   0   0
 2 CJ Walker             g  31   7  13    1    5   4   5  19      0    3   3  3   6  1   0   0
11 Braian Angola         g  32   6  19    3   10   2   2  17      4    4   8  4   2  3   0   1
14 Terance Mann          g  34   8  19    0    2   5   5  21      6    3   9  1   1  0   0   2
21 Christ Koumadje       c  10   1   2    0    0   0   0   2      1    1   2  1   0  1   1   0
 3 Trent Forrest            19   1   5    0    0   0   0   2      0    2   2  2   1  1   0   0
12 Ike Obiagu                2   0   1    0    0   0   0   0      1    0   1  0   0  0   0   0
23 MJ Walker                20   3  10    0    4   1   2   7      0    2   2  4   0  0   0   0
25 Mfiondu Kabengele        17   0   3    0    0   2   2   2      5    4   9  2   0  2   0   0
40 Brandon Allen             2   0   0    0    0   0   0   0      0    1   1  1   0  0   0   0
   Team                                                           3    1   4                  
                     =========================================================================
   FSU                   5 200  27  80    5   26  16  18  75     21   29  50 22  11 10   1   3
   Opp                     200  26  56    9   23  20  25  81      4   32  36 18  16 12   8   4


  1 2 Total
FLORIDA STATE
25
50
75
BOSTON COLLEGE
41
40
81
Attendance: 5,867

FLORIDA STATE 91, VIRGINIA TECH 82
01/20/2018, BLACKSBURG, VA

From the FSU Website, seminoles.com.

Freshman Walker Enjoys Career Performance At VT.

by Tim Linafelt, Senior Writer

BLACKSBURG, VA - M.J. Walker entered his first year at Florida State looking to learn, grow and develop into one of the Seminoles’ cornerstones of the future.

But if he happened to ever take over and lead his team to a crucial victory on the road, that was fine too.

The future arrived in a big way Saturday afternoon, as Walker, a freshman guard from Jonesboro, Ga., scored a career-high 24 points that sparked FSU to a 91-82 victory at Virginia Tech’s Cassell Coliseum.

It might be FSU’s most important victory of the season, having snapped a mini-skid of three losses in four games and giving the Seminoles some welcome momentum heading into a pivotal stretch of home games against Georgia Tech and Miami.

“We needed this game, and we came in with the mindset to start from the jump,” Walker said. “And that’s what we did.”

While Walker’s teammates did most of the heavy lifting in the first half, it was Walker who ensured that the Seminoles pulled away in the second.

Thanks to his 10 points early in the second period, FSU’s lead ballooned from three points at the break to as much as 14 down the stretch.

Walker shot 8 of 13 from the field, including 4 of 7 from 3-point range, and he also flashed his defensive prowess during a 9-2, second-half run that gave the Seminoles some breathing room.

Walker’s shooting breakthrough was part of an overall return to form for FSU. After connecting on just 38 percent of their shots in their previous three games combined (and 29 percent from 3-point range), the Seminoles broke through for a 58-percent performance on Saturday and drained 9 of 20 from distance.

“Everybody was shooting with confidence,” Walker said. “Even when we missed, we took what we got and continued to play our game.”

Which is all Walker has ever asked for himself this season.

A former five-star prospect who earned prestigious McDonald’s All-America honors as a high school senior, Walker is the latest in a line of blue-chip recruits to play in Tallahassee.

But while comparisons to the likes of Malik Beasley, Dwayne Bacon or Jonathan Isaac might have always been inevitable, Walker said he doesn’t feel any pressure to follow in their footsteps.

Those three all brought a little something different to the floor, and Walker believes that he does, too.

“I knew when I came here this was the best situation for me,” Walker said. “And I know those guys, Jon and Bacon, their games definitely impacted Florida State and those teams.

“But that’s not pressure on me. I can only control what I can control, and that’s to do my job and play as hard as I can every night and deal with the results and continue to get better.”

Walker’s results on Saturday were more than enough for the Seminoles, and they might also be a sign that he is emerging from a midseason lull in which he’d scored no more than seven points in his last five games.

That would be welcome news for FSU as it looks to separate itself from the middle of the pack in the ACC standings.

“The pace is different,” Walker said, when asked about his transition to college basketball. “It’s fast. There are a lot of details in practice, defensively and offensively, that we have to focus on. There’s lot of things we have to study on our own.”

It’s no surprise for a freshman to take a little time to gain his footing in the ACC, but Walker said he pushed through by trying to be a good teammate and believing that, if he followed his coaching, success would come.

On Saturday, his patience was rewarded.

“I try my best to keep my teammates in good position so we can win,” Walker said. “I just know to stay humble and trust the process, and just continue to do me and keep playing to win.”

 
NO        NAME          GS MIN FGM FGA 3FGM 3FGA FTM FTA PTS   OREB DREB REB PF AST TO BLK STL
== ==================== == === === === ==== ==== === === ===   ==== ==== === == === == === ===
 0 Phil Cofer            f  28   3   6    1    2   1   2   8      1    0   1  1   2  0   0   0
 2 CJ Walker             g  32   3   6    3    5   2   2  11      0    5   5  2   7  2   0   1
11 Braian Angola         g  21   3   7    0    3   8  10  14      0    0   0  4   2  2   0   1
14 Terance Mann          g  29   4   7    0    1   4   4  12      0    4   4  3   0  0   0   2
21 Christ Koumadje       c  15   5   6    0    0   0   0  10      1    3   4  3   0  2   0   0
 3 Trent Forrest            21   1   3    0    0   1   2   3      2    5   7  0   4  1   0   1
23 MJ Walker                32   8  13    4    7   4   5  24      0    6   6  0   1  1   0   1
25 Mfiondu Kabengele        18   4   9    1    1   0   1   9      4    4   8  3   0  2   1   0
40 Brandon Allen             4   0   1    0    1   0   0   0      0    0   0  0   0  0   0   0
   Team                                                           1    1   2                  
                     =========================================================================
   FSU                   5 200  31  58    9   20  20  26  91      9   28  37 16  16 10   1   6
   Opp                     200  32  60   10   29   8  15  82      5   20  25 20  19 13   1   4


  1 2 Total
FLORIDA STATE
41
50
91
VIRGINIA TECH
38
44
82
Attendance: 9,275

FLORIDA STATE 88, GEORGIA TECH 77
01/24/2018, TALLAHASSEE, FL

From the FSU Website, seminoles.com.

Super Mann Slams Noles Past Jackets.

by Tim Linafelt, Senior Writer

TALLAHASSEE, FL – For all his various talents on the basketball floor –and there are many, given the “glue guy” and “stat stuffer” monikers bestowed on him by coaches and teammates – Terance Mann’s best trait might be his ability to dunk the ball.

“He might be,” forward Phil Cofer said, when asked if Mann is the best dunker at Florida State. “He’s got a little bounce to him.”

“He’s alright,” guard Braian Angola said with a sly smile. “He thinks he is (the best), but he’s not.”

Georgia Tech might beg to differ.

Because, like the rest of the 9,879 in attendance at the Tucker Center on Wednesday night, the Yellow Jackets could only watch as Mann stuffed the basket with a pair of thunderous dunks on the way to a career-high 30 points and an 88-77 victory for Florida State.

The junior forward made 10 of 13 shots from the field, was 10 of 12 from the free-throw line and, just for good measure, led the Seminoles in rebounds (5) and assists (5) as they evened their conference record to 4-4 ahead of Saturday’s home clash with Miami.

“I was just attacking, attacking, attacking,” Mann said. “That’s how I want to be every game, but tonight it just played out well. Once you see the ball going through the net, you kind of just keep going.”

For Mann, the ball went through the net more than for any other Seminole in nearly 30 years. Not since Xavier Rathan-Mayes dropped 30 on North Carolina two years ago had an FSU player reached the 30-point mark.

Mann is fourth Seminole to accomplish the feat since the start of the 2010-11 season, joining Chris Singleton, Deividas Dulkys and Rathan-Mayes, who did it four times.

“He has improved in all areas,” Hamilton said. “He’s a guy who is moving the ball well, making (good) decisions, defending well and rebounding well. That’s what you like to see from a kid who is a die-hard Seminole.”

Florida State (15-5, 4-4 ACC) prides itself on its ability to win games by committee and have a different leading scorer on a nightly basis. More often than not, though, it’s Mann leading the charge. He’s led the Seminoles in three of seven ACC games in which he’s played (he missed one due to injury) and, early on Wednesday, teammates could tell that he was in for another big night.

“Pretty much from the start,” Angola said. “Just from warmups, you see the look in his eye. He’s ready to go. And when he looks like that, we just go straight back to him.”

Indeed, late in the first half, Mann almost singlehandedly turned what had been a close game into a lopsided affair.

With the Yellow Jackets (10-10, 3-4) holding a three-point advantage after an 8-3 run, Mann hit a jumper cut FSU’s deficit to one. He then went on to score 15 more points in the final 6:48 of the first half, a dominant stretch highlighted by both this:

By the time the horn sounded for halftime, FSU led 50-36, Mann had 21 points and had already made more free throws than in any single game of his career.

“He was terrific tonight,” Georgia Tech coach Josh Pastner said. “He was just kicking our butt and a lot of it was just straight line drives.”

Braian Angola reached double-figures for an eighth consecutive game – a stretch which spans the length of FSU’s ACC slate so far – and was responsible for the 3-pointer that snuffed out any hopes of a Georgia Tech rally.

With the Yellow Jackets flirting with a single-digit deficit for much of the second half, Angola swung the game with a 3-pointer from the corner that came on the heels of an offensive rebound by Trent Forrest.

That sequence, which happened during an otherwise forgettable night on the glass for the Seminoles, stretched FSU’s lead to 13 points with 3:32 to play.

“I had to make something happen, and I did it,” Angola said. “At the moment, they were making a run. And we got that 3 and it was kind of a dagger for them.”

Added Pastner: “That was big. That was the nail in the coffin.”

In addition to heroics from Mann and Angola, FSU mostly overcame a 34-26 rebounding discrepancy by turning 16 Georgia Tech giveaways into 24 points.

Things were so bad for Tech, that Pastner after the game suggested that he might implement a policy of a immediately benching players who are careless with the ball.

“We forced them into a lot of turnovers and it led to easy points,” Mann said.

With wins in three of their last four games, the Seminoles find themselves back at .500 in conference play headed into what will be a pivotal contest with Miami on Saturday.

The Hurricanes beat Louisville, 78-75, on Wednesday.

“This (win) is important,” Hamilton said. “Because we had kind of dug a little hole for ourselves, but that’s understandable. That’s the way it’s going to be (in the ACC). …

“We’ll look back on this season and we’ll realize that this was a very, very important game for us. Because these guys (Georgia Tech) are going to beat some people.”

 
NO        NAME          GS MIN FGM FGA 3FGM 3FGA FTM FTA PTS   OREB DREB REB PF AST TO BLK STL
== ==================== == === === === ==== ==== === === ===   ==== ==== === == === == === ===
 0 Phil Cofer            f  33   5   8    1    1   1   2  12      0    4   4  0   1  1   0   1
 2 CJ Walker             g  31   1   7    0    4   0   1   2      0    3   3  2   2  1   0   1
11 Braian Angola         g  32   5  10    3    6   6   6  19      0    2   2  4   2  0   0   2
14 Terance Mann          g  36  10  13    0    1  10  12  30      1    4   5  2   5  5   0   0
21 Christ Koumadje       c  16   2   4    0    0   0   0   4      2    2   4  5   0  1   1   0
 3 Trent Forrest            15   3   4    0    0   0   0   6      1    0   1  3   3  2   0   2
12 Ike Obiagu                7   0   0    0    0   0   0   0      0    0   0  0   0  0   2   0
23 MJ Walker                14   3   4    1    1   2   2   9      0    2   2  5   1  2   0   0
25 Mfiondu Kabengele        11   2   3    0    0   0   0   4      0    1   1  1   0  0   1   1
40 Brandon Allen             5   1   1    0    0   0   0   2      0    0   0  1   1  0   0   0
   Team                                                           2    2   4                  
                     =========================================================================
   FSU                   5 200  32  54    5   13  19  23  88      6   20  26 23  15 12   4   7
   Opp                     200  24  58    5   16  24  30  77     16   18  34 20  11 16   3   6


  1 2 Total
GEORGIA TECH
36
41
77
FLORIDA STATE
50
38
88
Attendance: 9,879

FLORIDA STATE 103, MIAMI 94
01/27/2018, TALLAHASSEE, FL

From the FSU Website, seminoles.com.

Noles Surge Past Canes In OT, 103-94.

by Tim Linafelt, Senior Writer

TALLAHASSEE, FL – Even after watching his team cede its nearly game-long lead with about a minute to play, and even after watching Miami connect on a virtually unfathomable 17 3-pointers, Leonard Hamilton wasn’t ever worried about how overtime between Florida State and the Hurricanes would play out.

The way the Seminoles carried themselves during the few moments between the end of regulation and the start of the extra frame told the FSU coach everything he needed to know.

“It was very interesting to see their body language,” Hamilton said. “They were extremely determined, all of them. … (They were saying), ‘We’re not going to lose this game. We’re not going to lose this game.’”

“Saying it and believing it,” junior forward Terance Mann later added.

The Seminoles then made believers out of both the Hurricanes and the sellout crowd of 11,675 by scoring the first seven points of overtime on the way to a 103-94 victory at the Tucker Center.

FSU scored on each of its 12 possessions of the overtime period and outscored the Canes 20-11 to pick up its third straight victory and improve its record to 16-5, 5-4 at the midway point of ACC play.

With a three-game winning streak in ACC play for the first time since February of last year, the Seminoles will hit the road for a pair of games at Wake Forest (Wednesday, 8 p.m.; ACC Network) and Louisville.

“We didn’t take our foot off the gas, at all,” said forward Phil Cofer, who led the Seminoles with 21 points, eight rebounds and a key block at the end of overtime.

“Everybody was more focused on defense than offense, and I think that’s what helped our offense come to us.”

With Cofer leading the way, FSU saw six different players score in double figures for the second time this season. Joining him were Braian Angola (18), CJ Walker (17), Mann (14), M.J. Walker (13) and Christ Koumadje (13).

“Their lowest guy had 13,” Miami coach Jim Larranaga said. “Sometimes, that’s your leading scorer.”

Sometimes, but not on a night in which both teams torched the opposing defenses from all ends of the floor.

Although FSU led for all but 4:06 and enjoyed healthy advantages in shooting percentage (60.0-50.0), rebounding (35-29) and free-throw attempts (39-13), Miami kept things close for the duration with 3-point shooting that, at times, seemed to defy logic.

The Hurricanes attempted a school-record 34 shots from distance and connected on 17 of them.

Some were wide open, some were contested, and some – as was the case for one of UM sophomore Dejan Vasiljevic’s six made 3s – bounced up off the rim and rolled around a bit before finally finding the net.

“Never in my imagination did I think we could win a game with them making 17 3s,” Hamilton said.

“It kept us in it,” Larranaga added. “But we couldn’t stop them.”

Indeed, Hamilton said after the game that his game plan was to work the ball inside as much as possible, and then use that to create opportunities from the perimeter.

Safe to say it worked. FSU scored 38 points in the paint while also connecting on nine of 19 3-point attempts, many of which kept the Hurricanes at bay during the second half.

However, it was a missed 3-pointer from Mann that opened the door for Miami to tie the game for the first time since it was 2-2. UM’s Dewan Huell took advantage with a layup that tied the score at 83-83 and, despite both teams having a chance to win in regulation, the game went to overtime moments later.

That’s when Hamilton saw his players regroup, refocus and reassert themselves over their rival.

“They never showed any signs of panic,” Hamilton said. “And you like to see your team show that type of poise during a very important game.”

It started with an alley-oop from Angola to Koumadje, then continued with a Cofer steal and a transition layup from CJ Walker.

Another Miami miss followed by a three-point play from Mann pushed FSU’s lead to 90-83 and made the overtime period decidedly less dramatic than it might otherwise have been.

Not that anyone in Florida State’s locker room would complain about that.

“I think the first few possessions, we kind of surprised them with the intensity,” Mann said. “And that’s how we ended up winning.”

 
NO        NAME          GS MIN FGM FGA 3FGM 3FGA FTM FTA PTS   OREB DREB REB PF AST TO BLK STL
== ==================== == === === === ==== ==== === === ===   ==== ==== === == === == === ===
 0 Phil Cofer            f  35   6  11    2    4   7  10  21      1    7   8  1   2  0   1   1
 2 CJ Walker             g  30   6  10    1    4   4   7  17      0    3   3  3   2  2   0   0
11 Braian Angola         g  38   4   5    2    2   8   8  18      1    6   7  1   6  2   0   1
14 Terance Mann          g  42   4   9    0    2   6  10  14      2    5   7  1   3  1   0   0
21 Christ Koumadje       c  24   6   7    0    0   1   2  13      0    2   2  4   0  0   1   0
 3 Trent Forrest            22   1   2    1    1   2   2   5      1    2   3  2   1  1   0   0
12 Ike Obiagu                2   0   0    0    0   0   0   0      0    0   0  0   0  0   0   0
23 MJ Walker                24   5   9    3    6   0   0  13      0    2   2  2   1  1   0   0
25 Mfiondu Kabengele         8   1   2    0    0   0   0   2      2    1   3  1   1  0   0   0
                     =========================================================================
   FSU                   5 225  33  55    9   19  28  39 103      7   28  35 15  16  7   2   2
   Opp                     225  34  68   17   34   9  13  94      9   20  29 25  17  7   3   4


  1 2 OT Total
MIAMI
39
44
11
94
FLORIDA STATE
44
39
20
103
Attendance: 11,675

WAKE FOREST 76, FLORIDA STATE 72
01/31/2018, WINSTON-SALEM, NC

From the FSU Website, seminoles.com.

Cofer’s 23 Not Enough As Noles’ Winning Streak Snapped.

WINSTON-SALEM, NC — Florida State coach Leonard Hamilton warned earlier this week that, despite its disappointing record, Wake Forest had the ability to sneak up and bite any opponent on its schedule.

The Demon Deacons proved Hamilton right.

Brandon Childress hit the go-ahead free throws with 44.1 seconds left to help Wake Forest hold off Florida State 76-72 on Wednesday night.

The Demon Deacons (9-13, 2-8 Atlantic Coast Conference) had to fight to the final seconds to earn their first win in four weeks, sealed only when Doral Moore hit a free throw with 2.3 seconds left to make it a two-possession game.

Bryant Crawford had 19 points for the Demon Deacons, who shot 52 percent after halftime.

Moore came up big late for Wake Forest. The 7-foot-1 junior had a dunk with 18.9 seconds left off a feed from Childress on the press break for a 75-72 lead. He also came up with key rebounds as FSU missed two free throws for the lead as well as a 3-pointer for the tie in the final seconds.

Phil Cofer scored 23 points for the Seminoles (16-6, 5-5).

BIG PICTURE

FSU: The Seminoles had won three straight league games to put themselves squarely in the middle of the traffic jam far behind No. 2 Virginia in the league standings. But they squandered an opportunity for a road win by losing a 10-point lead late in the first half.

Wake Forest: The Demon Deacons entered this one in desperate need to stop its descent after seven straight losses. It didn’t help that starting senior guard Mitchell Wilbekin was out with an ankle injury, too. Yet Wake Forest’s offense kicked into gear after halftime and the Demon Deacons did enough to overcome its late-game fades this season for the win.

 
NO        NAME          GS MIN FGM FGA 3FGM 3FGA FTM FTA PTS   OREB DREB REB PF AST TO BLK STL
== ==================== == === === === ==== ==== === === ===   ==== ==== === == === == === ===
 0 Phil Cofer            f  32   9  16    2    7   3   7  23      3    1   4  2   0  1   0   0
 2 CJ Walker             g  21   2   6    1    3   0   0   5      0    0   0  5   1  0   0   0
11 Braian Angola         g  25   1   8    0    2   0   0   2      1    1   2  3   2  3   0   2
14 Terance Mann          g  34   4   9    1    2   1   2  10      3    1   4  3   2  3   0   0
21 Christ Koumadje       c  24   4   6    0    0   2   3  10      3    5   8  0   0  0   3   0
 3 Trent Forrest            27   1   3    0    0   3   4   5      3    3   6  1   5  1   0   3
12 Ike Obiagu               11   0   0    0    0   0   0   0      0    2   2  2   0  0   2   0
23 MJ Walker                16   4   8    1    4   0   0   9      0    2   2  2   2  1   0   1
25 Mfiondu Kabengele        10   2   5    1    3   3   4   8      0    4   4  4   1  0   0   1
   Team                                                           2    3   5                  
                     =========================================================================
   FSU                   5 200  27  61    6   21  12  20  72     15   22  37 22  13  9   5   7
   Opp                     200  25  53    8   19  18  28  76     11   22  33 17  15 12   7   5


  1 2 Total
FLORIDA STATE
39
33
72
WAKE FOREST
33
43
76
Attendance: 7,809

FLORIDA STATE 80, LOUISVILLE 76
02/03/2018, LOUISVILLE, KY

From the FSU Website, seminoles.com.

Bench, Block Lead Noles to Road Win Against Cards.

by Layne Herdt

LOUISVILLE, KY — Phil Cofer scored 11 of his 16 points in the second half, Terance Mann added 11 and made a key block leading to M.J. Walker’s clinching dunk with 1 second remaining, and Florida State held off Louisville 80-76 on Saturday.

The Seminoles broke a 57-all tie with six unanswered points and ending with Cofer’s 3-point play. Their lead stretched to eight a couple of times before they had to fight off the Cardinals’ late charge that got them within 78-76 with 24.7 seconds remaining.

Mann’s two missed free throws with 17.4 seconds left opened the door for Louisville, but he recovered to block V.J. King’s shot 11 seconds later and lead to Walker’s dunk that sealed the hard-fought win. FSU (17-6, 6-5 Atlantic Coast Conference) bounced back from its loss to Wake Forest to hand Louisville (16-7, 6-4) its second straight defeat.

Braian Angola had 13 points, Christ Koumadje 11, and Trent Forrest 10 for the Seminoles, who shot 52 percent after halftime to take control of a tight game featuring 11 lead changes and seven ties.

Deng Adel had 19 points and Quentin Snider 15 for the Cardinals, who lost their second in a row.

BIG PICTURE

Florida State: The Seminoles offset 40 percent first-half shooting by outrebounding the Cardinals 6-0 offensively, leading to a 9-0 advantage in second-chance points for a 39-38 lead at the break. They were even at 10 in paint points before taking control to win that category 34-24 and the boards 43-34.

Louisville: The Cardinals had their chances but shot 36 percent in the second half and missed several free throws down the stretch that could have closed the gap much sooner. Snider’s five straight points got them within a basket with another opportunity to tie, but King’s blocked attempt led to the clinching basket. Ray Spalding had 13 points and nine rebounds.

 
NO        NAME          GS MIN FGM FGA 3FGM 3FGA FTM FTA PTS   OREB DREB REB PF AST TO BLK STL
== ==================== == === === === ==== ==== === === ===   ==== ==== === == === == === ===
 0 Phil Cofer            f  27   6  13    1    4   3   3  16      0    3   3  1   1  2   0   1
 2 CJ Walker             g  23   4   6    1    1   1   2  10      1    5   6  4   1  2   0   1
11 Braian Angola         g  23   3  11    3    6   4   5  13      0    5   5  4   1  1   0   1
14 Terance Mann          g  30   5   9    0    1   1   3  11      0    2   2  0   1  0   1   0
21 Christ Koumadje       c  28   4   6    0    0   3   4  11      1    7   8  4   0  1   3   0
 3 Trent Forrest            31   3   8    0    0   4   6  10      3    6   9  1   5  2   0   1
12 Ike Obiagu                6   0   0    0    0   1   2   1      1    1   2  2   0  0   1   0
23 MJ Walker                25   2   6    0    1   4   6   8      0    3   3  3   1  4   0   2
25 Mfiondu Kabengele         7   0   1    0    0   0   0   0      1    1   2  2   1  0   0   0
   Team                                                           3        3         1        
                     =========================================================================
   FSU                   5 200  27  60    5   13  21  31  80     10   33  43 21  11 13   5   6
   Opp                     200  25  59    9   21  17  26  76      6   28  34 22  12 12   6   6


  1 2 Total
FLORIDA STATE
39
41
80
LOUISVILLE
38
38
76
Attendance: 18,305

VIRGINIA 59, FLORIDA STATE 55
02/07/2018, TALLAHASSEE, FL

From the FSU Website, seminoles.com.

Defensive Struggle Ends in 59-55 Defeat to No. 2 Virginia.

By Layne Herdt and Ariya Massoudi

TALLAHASSEE, FL — For one half, Florida State looked like it was on the verge of making a statement against the No. 2 team in the nation.

The Seminoles (17-7, 7-7 ACC) had the 10,657 in attendance rocking after a transition alley-oop from CJ Walker to Christ Koumadje gave the Noles a 29-18 lead with 5:54 left in the half. That capped a 9-2 run in which FSU looked to be taking it to the Cavaliers’ No. 1 ranked defense.

“We definitely feel like we can dictate the game with the way we play on offense,” Phil Cofer said following the game. “We just came out with a lot of energy and played together.”

“We were able to push the pace a little bit in the first half and create some easy opportunities for ourselves,” Florida State coach Leonard Hamilton added on his team’s opening half success. “The second half they took away a lot of those easy shots and made it hard for us.”

The Seminoles took a 32-22 lead into the locker room, shooting 5 of 10 from beyond the arc in the process, while also holding the Cavaliers (23-1, 12-0 ACC) to under 35 percent from the floor.

It was one of the most complete halves of basketball Hamilton’s squad has played all season.

“We moved the ball really well and executed our game plan in the first half; we attacked the pack-line defense,” Mfiondu Kabengele said. “We made them come out and defend us and played with a lot of energy.”

At the break, Florida State was shooting nearly 48 percent from the floor and only turned it over six times in the half.

In the second half, the Cavaliers proved why they’re undefeated in the ACC and one of the best teams in the entire country.

Virginia’s vaunted pack-line defense gave FSU fits all half long, while the visitors also improved their play on the offensive side of the ball.

“I knew we would be in for a dogfight tonight, I had that feeling coming in,” Virginia coach Tony Bennett said. “Just the way they had been playing recently and the way they play at home; it was going to be a really tough match-up for us.”

Virginia slowly worked its way back into the ball game, keeping the same controlled, slow pace on the offensive side of the ball to create open shots against the Florida Staet defense.

The Cavaliers shot 45 percent from the floor in the second half, including 5 of 10 from the three-point line.

“We got punched in the mouth and I didn’t know how we would respond,” Bennett said. “In the second half I thought we punched back and made key plays down the stretch.”

Virginia took its first lead since early in the game at 44-43 on a layup by Ty Jerome with just under 10 minutes remaining in the game. Florida State fought back to take a 47-44 lead on a dunk by Koumadje and an aggressive lay-in by M.J. Walker.

Walker, who finished the contest with 10 points to lead Florida State, has emerged as one of the team’s go-to playmakers during ACC play.

“He’s learning and playing well, especially on defense,” Hamilton said. “I’ve been very pleased with his progress and he’s someone with a lot of confidence.”

“He’s really coming on and even sometimes can correct me on what I can improve,” Cofer added on Walker. “He’s been helping us a lot and it seems like he’s been here a lot longer than just one year.”

The Cavaliers re-took the lead with 6:06 left on an Isaiah Wilkins jumper and would not relinquish it the rest of the way.

The Seminoles shot under 32 percent from the floor in the second half and just 1 of 10 from beyond the arc as the Cavaliers held on for the 59-55 victory.

Up next for Florida State is a road game against Notre Dame on Saturday in Notre Dame, IN.

“We can’t worry about a loss because in the ACC if you dwell on it you will lose two in a row. We just have to move on,” Cofer said.

“We have a good team and we know what we can do, we just need to focus on the next game.”

 
NO        NAME          GS MIN FGM FGA 3FGM 3FGA FTM FTA PTS   OREB DREB REB PF AST TO BLK STL
== ==================== == === === === ==== ==== === === ===   ==== ==== === == === == === ===
 0 Phil Cofer            f  30   3   7    2    3   1   2   9      2    1   3  2   0  2   0   0
 2 CJ Walker             g  23   2   3    1    2   2   2   7      0    3   3  2   4  4   0   0
11 Braian Angola         g  35   1  11    1    8   4   4   7      0    1   1  1   4  0   0   0
14 Terance Mann          g  27   1   4    0    1   1   2   3      0    3   3  2   0  2   0   0
21 Christ Koumadje       c  19   3   5    0    0   0   0   6      2    2   4  3   0  3   1   0
 3 Trent Forrest            22   1   3    0    0   1   1   3      0    4   4  2   1  0   0   0
12 Ike Obiagu                9   1   1    0    0   2   4   4      1    2   3  1   0  0   0   0
23 MJ Walker                24   3   7    2    5   2   4  10      0    1   1  2   2  0   1   0
25 Mfiondu Kabengele        10   3   4    0    1   0   0   6      1    5   6  0   0  0   0   0
40 Brandon Allen             1   0   0    0    0   0   0   0      0    0   0  0   0  0   0   0
   Team                                                           1    2   3                  
                     =========================================================================
   FSU                   5 200  18  45    6   20  13  19  55      7   24  31 15  11 11   2   0
   Opp                     200  22  55    7   17   8  10  59      8   19  27 18   8  6   1   4


  1 2 Total
VIRGINIA
22
37
59
FLORIDA STATE
32
23
55
Attendance: 10,657

NOTRE DAME 84, FLORIDA STATE 69
02/10/2018, SOUTH BEND, IN

From the FSU Website, seminoles.com.

Basketball Falls At Notre Dame, 84-69.

SOUTH BEND, IN — Matt Farrell scored a career-high 28 points to lead Notre Dame’s potent three-guard attack in an 84-69 victory over Florida State.

Rex Pfluger added a career-high 19 points and T.J. Gibbs matched him with 19 after a poor-shooting first half (2 of 12) as Mike Brey’s Irish (15-10, 5-7 Atlantic Coast Conference) won their second straight after losing seven in a row.

C.J. Walker had 16 points, Phil Cofer, 12 and PJ Savoy, 11 — all in the first half — for the Seminoles (17-8, 6-7 ACC), who lost their second straight and left coach Leonard Hamilton still seeking his 500th career victory.

Both teams struggled shooting early — Florida State went 5 1/2 minutes between field goals and Notre Dame nearly 5 minutes — before the Irish found their stroke from 3-point range hitting six of its first 12 on way to its biggest lead of the half, 32-22, with 3:42 before the half.

The Irish then answered a 6-0 Seminole run and took a 40-34 halftime lead on the fourth 3-pointer by Farrell, who had 14 points.

Florida State’s height began to wear down the Irish on the boards in the second half. The Seminoles had a 16-9 edge and eventually caught the Irish 52-52 with 10:29 left on Walker’s 3-pointer.

But Gibbs made three free throws to give the Irish a 61-56 lead with 7:49 left. His driving bucket, combined with FSU’s 3 1/2-minute scoring, gave the Irish a 70-58 lead with 3:57 remaining.

 
NO        NAME          GS MIN FGM FGA 3FGM 3FGA FTM FTA PTS   OREB DREB REB PF AST TO BLK STL
== ==================== == === === === ==== ==== === === ===   ==== ==== === == === == === ===
 0 Phil Cofer            f  26   5  10    1    4   1   1  12      1    4   5  0   0  1   0   0
 2 CJ Walker             g  23   6   8    4    5   0   0  16      0    3   3  4   2  2   0   0
11 Braian Angola         g  23   1   6    0    3   1   3   3      1    1   2  3   1  1   0   1
14 Terance Mann          g  31   2   7    0    1   1   2   5      4    4   8  2   3  4   0   0
21 Christ Koumadje       c  18   4   6    0    0   0   0   8      2    3   5  3   1  0   1   0
 3 Trent Forrest            24   1   4    0    0   4   5   6      1    3   4  1   4  2   2   3
 5 PJ Savoy                 15   4   9    3    8   0   0  11      0    0   0  0   1  1   0   0
12 Ike Obiagu                3   0   0    0    0   0   0   0      0    0   0  1   0  0   0   0
23 MJ Walker                20   3  10    1    5   0   0   7      1    1   2  3   0  1   0   0
25 Mfiondu Kabengele        15   0   4    0    0   1   2   1      1    2   3  2   0  0   2   0
40 Brandon Allen             2   0   0    0    0   0   0   0      0    0   0  0   0  0   0   0
   Team                                                                3   3                  
                     =========================================================================
   FSU                   5 200  26  64    9   26   8  13  69     11   24  35 19  12 12   5   4
   Opp                     200  27  55   10   26  20  24  84      5   30  35 15  11 10   2   4


  1 2 Total
FLORIDA STATE
34
35
69
NOTRE DAME
40
44
84
Attendance: 9,149

FLORIDA STATE 81, CLEMSON 79
02/14/2018, TALLAHASSEE, FL, OT

From the FSU Website, seminoles.com.

Forrest Sparks Huge Second Half Rally as Noles Prevail in OT.

By Layne Herdt and Ariya Massoudi

TALLAHASSEE, FL – Every season has a defining moment.

For Florida State, it quite possibly could have come in the locker room at halftime, down 41-29 to No. 11 Clemson on its home floor.

“We had to get better on the defensive end, we needed to stop turning the ball over and giving them free baskets (too),” Seminole coach Leonard Hamilton said following the game on the message at halftime to his team. “We didn’t want to change our mentality a whole lot, but we needed to get some stops.”

The first half was one to forget, as the Seminoles turned the ball over 11 times, while also struggling from the free throw line, going just 9 of 15. Meanwhile, the Tigers nailed 7 of 16 threes in the opening frame. A 9-2 run for Clemson gave the visitors a 12-point lead as the teams headed into the locker rooms.

“We needed to fight, we needed to be aggressive,” Phil Cofer said following the game. “We knew we weren’t out of the ball game.”

The second half began ominously as Clemson rattled off 8 of the first 10 points of the stanza, drilling two more threes in the process to lead 49-31 with 18:36 in the second half. It was a moment in which the Seminoles could have folded, their season winding down with few opportunities for marquee wins left on the schedule.

Instead, FSU dug deep and perhaps played one of its best halves of basketball all season.

“Defense is all I can say,” Trent Forrest said on what changed the game for FSU in the second half.

“We got steals, we got stops and that led to easy buckets for our offense.”

The Seminoles stormed to a 17-2 run, behind stingy defense and a full-court trap that created all sorts of problems for the Tigers.

Clemson turned the ball over four times during the next four minutes, leading to easy transition buckets for Florida State. The Seminoles had completely altered the pace of the game, playing their preferred style of transition basketball.

“They weren’t prepared for it and it threw off their rhythm,” Forrest said of the trapping defense. “We wanted to chop away at the lead, we’ve been in different situations before and we wanted to focus on four-minute segments.”

CJ Walker, Braian Angola and Forrest each had key layups or dunks in transition after the Seminoles turned the Tigers over during the big run, cutting the lead to 51-48 at the 13:25 mark of the second half.

The rest of the game was played within single digits as the Seminoles kept the game within distance leading to the heroics of Cofer and Forrest in regulation and overtime.

Cofer and Forrest shine when needed most

An 18-point deficit just minutes into the second half provided Florida State with a nearly impossible task of rallying to beat one of the best teams in the country.

It was a moment in which FSU needed someone to step up and save the season from the brinks of disaster. The Seminoles, in search of wins to remain in good position for a bid to the NCAA Tournament, were looking for a leader.

Forrest and Cofer were up to the task, notching 17 and 16 points in the contest, most coming in the second half and in overtime as FSU pulled out the 81-79 victory.

Cofer scored all 17 of his points in the second half, keeping his team within striking distance throughout the period. His senior season has displayed an improved skill-set from the forward, but against the Tigers he was asked to combine them at a crucial time with the Seminoles’ backs against the wall.

“I worked so hard during the summer and my coaches wanted me to be aggressive,” Cofer said. “I think the way our offense is, it creates opportunities for the drive and kick and I took advantage of that tonight.”

“Phil wasn’t going to let us lose, he made some tremendous shots that were difficult,” Hamilton added. “It shows how much progress he’s made and how much confidence we have in him.”

Whether it was pull up jumpers from the elbow, turn-around baskets with a player in his face, or drives to the bucket, Cofer was brilliant in the comeback.

His back-to-back to scores, a dunk and a pull-up jumper, tied the contest at 59-59 for the first time in the game at the 6:59 mark of the second half.

The senior would make crucial shots from beyond the arc and in the final three minutes of the game to sink any mini-run the Tigers would make to close it out, setting up Forrest for what was to come.

Forrest, a sophomore from Chipley, Fla., dazzled in the second half and overtime, scoring 12 of his 16 points in the final two periods. Physical drive after physical drive resulted in points for the normally, pass-first guard.

“We needed him to take advantage of driving opportunities,” Hamilton said. “We talked about it at halftime and Trent responded very well.”

Forrest routinely got into the middle of Clemson’s elite defense, finding drivers for lay-ins or finishing himself. His highlight-reel, spinning lay-up with eight seconds left in the game tied the score at 70-70, eventually sending the contest into overtime.

In the extra five minutes, with the Seminoles trailing 74-70 and under two minutes left, CJ Walker buried a triple to cut the lead to one.

Forrest then took over the final 1:30 as he gave FSU its first lead of the night at 75-74 with an acrobatic baseline drive and then extending the lead to three moments later with another drive and score. His two clutch free throws with 0:05 left in the game showed a calm demeanor in a tense situation, pushing the lead to 81-78.

“The coaches and players trust me and it was something I needed to do to help the team, Forrest said.

“When he first came in (to Florida State), he was a little quiet,” Cofer said laughing. “Now he tells me what I need to do at times.”

The win moved Florida State to 18-8 (7-7 ACC) and kept the Noles in position to earn a bid to the NCAA Tournament later this season. Next on the docket is a home match-up with the Pittsburgh Panthers on Sunday at 6 p.m. (ESPNU) inside the Donald L. Tucker Center.

 
NO        NAME          GS MIN FGM FGA 3FGM 3FGA FTM FTA PTS   OREB DREB REB PF AST TO BLK STL
== ==================== == === === === ==== ==== === === ===   ==== ==== === == === == === ===
 0 Phil Cofer            f  37   8  11    1    4   0   0  17      1    4   5  3   1  1   0   0
 2 CJ Walker             g  26   3   5    1    2   0   2   7      0    2   2  5   3  0   1   0
11 Braian Angola         g  23   5  13    0    4   0   0  10      2    2   4  1   1  5   0   2
14 Terance Mann          g  38   4   6    1    1   4   6  13      2    6   8  1   3  4   2   2
21 Christ Koumadje       c   7   1   1    0    0   0   0   2      0    0   0  3   0  1   0   0
 3 Trent Forrest            31   7  11    0    0   2   2  16      0    1   1  2   4  1   1   1
 5 PJ Savoy                 16   1   5    1    5   5   6   8      0    2   2  1   2  2   0   1
12 Ike Obiagu                7   0   0    0    0   1   2   1      0    1   1  0   0  0   1   1
23 MJ Walker                28   3   7    1    3   0   0   7      0    0   0  5   0  3   0   0
25 Mfiondu Kabengele        12   0   2    0    0   0   2   0      2    3   5  0   0  0   0   2
   Team                                                           1    4   5                  
                     =========================================================================
   FSU                   5 225  32  61    5   19  12  20  81      8   25  33 21  14 17   5   9
   Opp                     225  28  61   10   26  13  18  79      9   23  32 17  12 21   2   9


  1 2 OT Total
CLEMSON
41
29
9
79
FLORIDA STATE
29
41
11
81
Attendance: 9,131

FLORIDA STATE 88, PITTSBURGH 75
02/18/2018, TALLAHASSEE, FL

From the FSU Website, seminoles.com.

Late Surge Past Pitt Keeps Momentum Rolling.

by Bob Thomas

TALLAHASSEE, FL – Overcoming a barrage of 3-pointers and the banishment of two starters in the first half, Florida State’s depth and growing confidence were decisive in Sunday night’s 88-75 victory over Pittsburgh.

With PJ Savoy and MJ Walker combining for 32 points in rare starting roles, and Phil Cofer and Mfiondu Kabengele contributing 27 points and 12 rebounds, the Noles kept the Panthers winless in ACC play by closing the game on a 23-10 run over the final 6:18.

A second consecutive victory has the Seminoles (19-8, 8-7 ACC) over .500 in league play for just the third time this season with three games remaining. In the process, they extended Pitt’s misery. The Panthers (8-19, 0-15) suffered their 15th consecutive loss and have not won since Dec. 22, 2017.

In a 65-65 tie with 6:18 remaining, Cofer scored the Noles’ next six points in a 6-3 spurt, opening up a lead Pitt could not overcome. Scoreless in the first half, the senior forward scored 12 of his 14 points down the stretch.

“They’re long and athletic and good,” Pitt coach Kevin Stallings said. “In the end that was the difference. They were able to draw fouls and we couldn’t guard them effectively enough without fouling them. I was very pleased with how our team played and how we competed and sorry for them that we couldn’t pull it out.”

Pitt trailed 74-71 after Shamiel Stevenson’s transition basket with 3:29 remaining, but a pair of MJ Walker free throws and a three-point play by Trent Forrest (12 points, four assists) sealed the deal.

“Their ability to knock 3s down in the first half really, really kept us at bay,” said FSU coach Leonard Hamilton, after Pitt’s 10th 3-pointer of the half – Marcus Carr’s triple at the buzzer – sent the Panthers to the locker room with a 39-38 lead. “In the second half we were much more aggressive. In the first half we scored three points off their turnovers and in the second half we scored 15 points.

“We got some deflections, got some steals, got some easy baskets. We got a little momentum and was able in the latter part to extend the lead the last six or seven minutes.”

FSU’s aggressiveness in the second half, at both ends of the floor, was obvious. Not only did the Noles limit the visitors to six 3-point attempts over the final 20 minutes – Pitt took 17 in the first half – but they also forced eight turnovers after the break.

At the offensive end, the Noles repeatedly beat the Panthers off the dribble, opening up passing lanes and creating finishing opportunities, with Kabengele and Cofer obligingly delivering. The inside tandem was largely responsible for FSU’s 36-24 points in the paint advantage, and 17-3 disparity on second-chance points.

“Fiondu, I thought his energy was unbelievable,” Hamilton said. “He was emotional, he energized the team. He was excited and he let everybody know that his effort meant something, and I thought our players responded to him.”

Providing that energy against Pitt’s undersized front line was a role the redshirt freshman embraced.

“With this team, we have so many talented players and there are still some gaps in our game that need to be filled,” Kabengele said. “When I talk to the coaching staff and they tell me what I can excel in – rebounding, defensive end, contesting shots – I decided to take that challenge, do what I can and just execute it.”

His 13 points and six rebounds were no small contributing factors to the outcome. Neither were Savoy’s game-high 18 points, which included five 3-pointers, in his most extended action since missing seven games with a knee injury.

“Man we’ve missed him,” Hamilton said of Savoy.

Savoy and MJ Walker were inserted into the starting lineup as replacements for Terance Mann and Braian Angola, who sat out the entire first half for what Hamilton called a, “small indiscretion.”

After roaring back from 18 points down to defeat 11th-ranked Clemson in the last outing, the Seminoles never seemed to lack the confidence in the face of Pitt’s extended challenge. It certainly didn’t hurt that the Panthers’ foul trouble not only led to three disqualifications, but sent the Noles to the free throw line 40 times.

FSU held a whopping 29-15 edge in free throws made, and were 13 of 17 from the line in the second half.

That the Panthers played exclusively man-to-man defense throughout the game – a rarity this season against the Noles – was a contributing factor to that disparity.

“The reason a lot of teams play us zone, I feel like they can’t guard us; we’re too athletic, talented and can get to the cup,” MJ Walker said. “When we continue to force our will on the opponent it’s hard for them to guard us.”

And when it mattered most, that’s exactly what the Noles did on the way to authoring their 19th win of the season, which will be followed by a seven-day break before traveling to NC State.

Hamilton hopes to use that extended late-season break to refine his rotation in an effort to keep the momentum moving forward with the postseason on the horizon.

“We’ve had some things that we’ve had to overcome during the course of the season,” Hamilton said, noting the injuries to Forrest, Christ Koumadje and Savoy. “It’s kind of kept us from developing a real smooth rotation. Hopefully, with having a few days off now, we can get back in the gym a couple days and really, really start putting things together to make a real, good stretch.

“Somebody in our league is going to make a run there and make a move to the top. We hope that team is us.”

 
NO        NAME          GS MIN FGM FGA 3FGM 3FGA FTM FTA PTS   OREB DREB REB PF AST TO BLK STL
== ==================== == === === === ==== ==== === === ===   ==== ==== === == === == === ===
 0 Phil Cofer            f  31   6  11    0    1   2   2  14      1    5   6  0   0  0   1   0
 2 CJ Walker             g  28   2   4    0    2   1   2   5      0    1   1  2   3  1   0   1
 5 PJ Savoy              g  30   5   7    5    7   3   5  18      0    2   2  2   1  2   0   0
21 Christ Koumadje       c  11   1   2    0    0   3   7   5      0    3   3  2   1  0   0   0
23 MJ Walker             g  29   3   6    1    3   7   8  14      1    2   3  2   3  0   1   2
 3 Trent Forrest            27   4   6    0    1   4   5  12      1    4   5  3   4  1   0   1
11 Braian Angola             5   0   2    0    2   0   0   0      0    0   0  1   0  1   0   0
12 Ike Obiagu                2   0   0    0    0   0   0   0      0    1   1  2   0  0   0   0
14 Terance Mann             14   2   3    0    0   0   0   4      0    2   2  4   3  1   0   0
25 Mfiondu Kabengele        18   2   3    0    0   9  11  13      3    3   6  3   0  1   1   1
40 Brandon Allen             5   1   3    1    3   0   0   3      0    0   0  0   0  1   0   0
   Team                                                           1        1                  
                     =========================================================================
   FSU                   5 200  26  47    7   19  29  40  88      7   23  30 21  15  8   3   5
   Opp                     200  24  48   12   23  15  22  75      3   20  23 31  13 12   1   3


  1 2 Total
PITTSBURGH
39
36
75
FLORIDA STATE
38
50
88
Attendance: 9,123