Florida State stuns eighth-ranked Duke
Durham, NC (Sports Network) – Al Thornton poured in 21 points and grabbed
eight rebounds, as Florida State stunned eighth-ranked Duke, 68-67, in an ACC
clash at Cameron Indoor Stadium.
Toney Douglas added 15 points and was 3-of-5 from beyond the arc for Florida
State (17-6, 5-4 ACC), which has won five of its last six games. Uche Echefu
added 12 points and six boards in the victory.
The Seminoles also defeated Duke for the first time ever at Cameron Indoor
Stadium. Florida State came into the game with 15 straight losses in Durham.
Greg Paulus netted 23 points for the Blue Devils (18-5, 5-4), who were coming
off a heart-breaking overtime loss to Virginia on Thursday.
DeMarcus Nelson had 14 points and six rebounds for Duke, which has lost two
straight. Josh McRoberts finished with 12 points and five boards in the loss.
“It was as hard a loss as you can get,” said Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski.
“The kids were so ready to play. We’ve lost three very difficult games in
conference, two in overtime and this one. They’re playing well, they’re
fighting and they just have to keep doing that. It’s not going to come easy.
It’s not because of lack of effort or preparation; these kids are playing
their hearts out.”
Trailing by three points after 20 minutes, the Seminoles opened the second
half on a 7-2 run to take a 40-38 edge.
The contest then went back-and-forth until Thornton hit two free throws and
Ryan Reid scooped in two points to give Florida State a 68-62 advantage with
just under four minutes remaining.
A long jump shot by Nelson followed by two free throws from Jon Scheyer made
it a one-point game with 2 1/2 minutes to play.
After a defensive stop, Duke had a chance to go in front, but a hook shot by
Nelson in the paint fell short with under a minute to go.
Duke’s defense then stopped Florida State and the Blue Devils got the ball
back with about thirty seconds to go. After a timeout, McRoberts got the ball
down low and his jumper hit hard off the backboard and Nelson’s tip attempt
rolled off the rim as time expired.
“Down the stretch I think the most important thing was that we got some
defensive stops and we made one or two more baskets than them,” said Florida
State head coach Leonard Hamilton. “I think we both probably had the same kind
of looks — we were very fortunate that a couple of ours went in. We were very
fortunate that a couple of their good shots didn’t go in.”
The Blue Devils roared out of the gate and opened the contest on a 15-4 run to
take control early. Paulus donated nine points during the stretch on 4-of-4
shooting from the field.
Duke took a 15-point lead after McRoberts drilled a trey from the left corner
to make it 25-10 with about 10 1/2 minutes to play in the opening half.
Florida State answered with a 15-2 spurt to pull within 29-25 with five
minutes remaining in the first half. Echefu contributed seven points during
The Blue Devils went into the break with a 36-33 lead.
The Seminoles improved to 3-5 on the road this season…Florida State defeated
Duke for just the sixth time in the last 31 meetings…The Seminoles shot 45.6
percent from the field for the game while the Blue Devils shot 44.2 percent
from the floor…Duke fell to 14-2 at home this season.