Feb. 16, 2014
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (seminoles.com) –
Florida State, which gained a win over Wake Forest on Saturday night in Winston-Salem, plays host to North Carolina on Monday, February 17, 2014 at the Donald L. Tucker Center in its second consecutive appearance on ESPN’s wildly successful Big Monday television package. The Seminoles gained their 15th win of the season as the rallied to defeat the Deacons on their home court with the brilliant performances of guards Aaron Miller (19 points and a career-high 14 rebounds) and Ian Miller (career high 25 points) as they gained their third ACC road win of the season. The Seminoles also won at Clemson (56-41, January 9) and at Miami (63-53, January 15). In facing North Carolina the Seminoles play host to the team they defeated to win the 2012 ACC Championship at Phillips Arena in Atlanta (85-82, March 12, 2012) and a team they most recently defeated during the 2011 season at home by a 90-57 margin (Jan. 14, 2011). Since a Florida State victory in the semifinals of the 2009 ACC Tournament (which propelled the Seminoles into their first ever ACC Tournament championship game, the Seminoles have defeated the Tar Heels four times including twice in the ACC Tournament, once in Tallahassee and once in Chapel Hill. Following Monday’s game against North Carolina, the Seminoles will travel to play at Pittsburgh on Sunday, February 23 at 6:00 p.m. in their first game against the Panthers as members of the ACC.
THOMAS CONTINUES TO PLAY AS AN ALL ACC CANDIDATE
Sophomore All-ACC candidate Aaron Thomas earned the first double double of his career with 19 points and a career-high 14 rebounds in Florida State’s 67-60 victory over Wake Forest on Saturday night in Winston Salem. Thomas was an all-around star with his 19 points and 14 rebounds to go along with three assists and four steals in a career-high 39 minutes. As a starter in five games this season, Thomas is averaging 19.2 points and 6.0 rebounds while shooting .451 from the field and .565 from the 3-point line. He enters Monday’s game against North Carolina as Florida State’s leading scorer with a career-high 13.3 points per game scoring average.
THOMAS IN THE ACC STATISTICS
Sophomore All-ACC candidate Aaron Thomas, one of the top all-around players in the ACC, enters Monday’s game against North Carolina ranked fifth in steals (1.7 spg), seventh in free throw shooting percentage (.825), and 18th in scoring (13.3 ppg).
MILLER ENJOYS THE BEST SCORING NIGHT OF HIS CAREER AGAINST WAKE FOREST
Playing in front of a throng of family and friends on Saturday night in Winston-Salem, senior Ian Miller (from nearby Charlotte, N.C.) scored his career-high of 25 points to propel the Seminoles to their 67-60 victory over Wake Forest. Miller scored 10 points in the first half (five after the Seminoles fell behind by 16 points) and 15 second half points (including nine on three 3-point field goals) as he totaled 20 points in a game for the career-high fourth time this season. He also scored 22 in Florida State’s win over the No. 10/10 VCU in the first round of the Puerto Rico Tip-Off, 20 in a victory over UT Martin and 20 in Florida State’s win over Maryland on January 12 in Tallahassee. In his four games in which he has scored 20 points or better this season, Miller is shooting .750 from the 3-point line (16 of 24) with a career-high six made 4-point field goals coming against Maryland (20 points) and five coming against Wake Forest (25 points).
LOOK FOR FLORID STATE TO…
…Defeat North Carolina and gain its fifth victory over the Tar Heels in their last 10 meetings between the two teams. The Seminoles have won four of the last nine games they have played against the Tar Heels with those four wins all coming since the semifinals of the 2009 ACC Tournament;
…Defeat North Carolina and win for the second time in the last three games at home against North Carolina. The Seminoles played host to North Carolina with ESPN’s College Game Day in the Tucker Center and topped the Tar Heels, 90-57. That was the last time, before Monday’s game, that ESPN’s Jay Bilas was in Tallahassee.
SEMINOLES BLOCK SEVEN SHOTS AGAINST WAKE; TAKE BACK OVERALL ACC LEAD
Led by Boris Bojanovsky’s six blocked shots (four in the second half) in Florida State’s victory over Wake Forest, the Seminoles reclaimed their lead in the ACC in the blocked shots category with 145 (Clemson has 141). The Seminoles are also the overall blocked shots leaders in ACC games only with 65 (Syracuse has 64). Florida State is looking to lead the ACC in blocked shots for the school record fifth consecutive season. Florida State’s seven blocked shots against Wake Forest marked the fifth time this season it has blocked at least seven shots in an ACC games with its season high of nine coming at Virginia on January 18. The Seminoles (led by Bojanovsky’s career-high seven rejections) blocked a season-high 12 shots in their win over then No. 21 UMass in the Orange Bowl Classic on December 21.
FLORIDA STATE IN ITS SIX ACC VICTORIES
In five of its six ACC wins, the Seminoles have held their opponent below 38 percent shooting from the field and limited them to an average of 556.5 points scored per game. Florida State has held six ACC opponents (including Duke on January 25, .305 field goal percentage shooting) hooting under 38 percent from the field and are very successful when they limit their opponents’ open looks at the basket.
SEMINOLES RALLY TO TOP WAKE WITH SECOND HALF RALLY
Florida State outscored Wake Forest 55-34 in the final 26 minutes of Saturday’s night’s game including 44-31 in the second half to earn its sixth ACC win of the season. For the Seminoles it marked their second second half rally of their ACC season and their third of the season. Florida State’s six point second half rally – and rally after trailing by as many as 16 in the first half was its largest of the season.