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Preview: Duke at Florida State
 
Noles Down 3's and #3 Duke, 82-75 (OT)
Team Box
Noles Down 3's and #3 Duke, 82-75 (OT)
By Orin Day
January 29, 2009

  NUTSHELL     BOX     STATS  

The Nutshell


This year's FSU Media Guide is titled "Here To Stay" and the first place Seminoles lived up to that motto, knocking off #3 Duke in an 80-75 overtime thriller in Tallahassee to retain the top spot in the ACC. It's the second #3 that FSU has knocked off in the Tucker Center this season, having defeated Texas A&M on January 5th. Their last victory over Duke was February 8, 2004, when Duke was ranked #2. However it seemed that this was a bigger win for the Noles fans and head coach Sue Semrau, who grabbed a mic at midcourt to thank everybody for their support.

Duke held double digit leads on several occasions but FSU didn't let any Blue Devil runs escalate into a knockout punch. Instead FSU chipped away, found a way to get rebounds out of their four guard lineup, took quality three point attempts, and benefited greatly from the interior dominance of Jacinta Monroe. The level of excitement throughout the game from FSU's players and fans was consistent, reaching a fever pitch as the Noles made up deficits at the end of each half. The second half comeback was capped by a game-tying three by senior Mara Freshour (21 points) that ultimately forced overtime. The second dagger from Freshour was a three midway through overtime, giving FSU a 74-70 lead. On the ensuing Duke possession Chante Black led with the elbow in the lane, fouling out with 2:18 left. Duke kept on fighting but couldn't make enough threes to catch up, and FSU made their free throws down the stretch.

Once again turnovers dogged the Devils as 17 of their 21 miscues came from the frontcourt. Duke was outrebounded 40-31, only managing to snare 8 offensive rebounds along the way. Abby Waner had an excellent shooting night, going 5-9 from the field, 2-4 from beyond the arc, and 1-2 from beyond the Tropic of Capricorn. Despite 7 blocks by Monroe Duke managed its second best shooting night of the season, 49.2% overall and 50% from long range. However this was trumped by Duke's defense allowing FSU to shoot over 45% for the game - the worst shooting defense for the Devils so far.

FSU improves to 18-4, 6-0 in the league and next hosts Maryland. Duke drops to 17-2 and second in the ACC at 5-1, tied with Monday's night foe, Boston College. We'll publish a preview of the surprising Eagles and sharpshooter Mickel Picco sometime over the weekend.



Preview: Duke at Florida State
 
Noles Down 3's and #3 Duke, 82-75 (OT)
Team Box

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