The Daily Nole

FSU Basketball Goes Undefeated At Home, Beats Miami 66-57

Clint Eiland/The Daily Nole

Florida State finished off the regular season with an exciting 66-57 victory over the Miami Hurricanes on Saturday afternoon. The Seminoles secured a 2-seed for the upcoming ACC Tournament and capped off a perfect record at home for the 2016-17 season.

It was a game of momentum in the first half, with both teams trading the lead every few minutes. Florida State decided to go big with Jarquez Smith, Michael Ojo, and Chris Koumadje getting a combined 24 minutes. It was decently effective at certain points, but the guard play from both teams left much to be desired. They couldn’t get the ball inside and often turned it over or took difficult shots. The numbers were pretty even in the first half: 52 percent shooting for Miami, 45 percent shooting for FSU. Another example was on the boards, where Miami got 12 rebounds and FSU got 15. The Seminoles led 37-34 at the half.

Anyone expecting fireworks to start the second half was severely disappointed. After nearly six minutes of play, the teams had scored less than 10 combined points. The defense clearly carried over from the first half and would continue to be apparent for the rest of the contest. Florida State switched to a 2-3 zone sometime at the the beginning and it worked fairly well.

C.J. Walker struggled a bit in it but Xavier Rathan-Mayes and Terance Mann did very well. As the second half progressed, Florida State began to extend its lead more and more. With under five minutes in the game, the Seminoles led by 11. Despite various attempts by Miami to get itself back in it, the Hurricanes were unable to fully overcome the deficit, and late game heroics by Dwayne Bacon guided FSU to another home victory over its rivals from Coral Gables.


  • Jarquez Smith did not get rattled after his disappointing Duke game. He scored six points in the first five minutes of the game and was aggressive in the paint.
  • Both offenses slowed to a near halt at the 12-minute mark. The guards were getting frustrated and were not able to find the open man for either team. It wasn’t like they were taking many shots either. The teams were shooting at 57 percent (Miami) and 47 percent (FSU) with under eight minutes left.
  • Rathan-Mayes hits some ridiculously tough shots when he wants to. He spurred a late first half surge with a deep 3-pointer and long jump shot during an 11-5 FSU run.
  • Bad shot selection in the final two minutes of the half really helped swing momentum away from FSU. The Seminoles started taking unnecessary 3s and let Miami run up the court for quick points.
  • Partly encouraging should be FSU coach Leonard Hamilton’s insistence on getting the traditional “big men” plenty of minutes on Saturday. It helped them regain their confidence and prepare them for what FSU will attempt to do in the tournaments. Of the three players that qualify (Ojo, Smith, Koumadje), they combined for 17 points, 11 rebounds, and two blocks.
  • Miami had trouble converting turnovers into points. FSU had 17 points on 13 takeaways, compared to Miami’s paltry seven points on nine of them. The opportunities were there for the Hurricanes. They just couldn’t take advantage of them.
  • As mentioned above, the 2-3 zone FSU ran did its job. Miami only scored 23 points in the second half and shot a terrible 31 percent in it. Compare this to their first half when the Hurricanes hit a 52 percent shooting mark. It was one of the most impressive defensive halves from this Florida State team yet.
  • The Seminoles only shot 21 percent from behind the arc, yet still came out with a 9-point victory. That worked against Miami but it might be unsustainable once the big tournament comes around.

Notable Numbers

Dwayne Bacon (FSU): 23 points (8-for-17), 2 rebounds, 2 assists

Jarquez Smith (FSU): 11 points (5-for-10), 5 rebounds

Davon Reed (UM): 22 points (6-for-11), 6 rebounds, 6 assists

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