Feb. 21, 2006
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. –
Florida State, which has won four consecutive home games, plays host to Maryland in the first and only regular season meeting between the Seminoles and the Terps on Wednesday Feb. 22 at 9:00 p.m. in the Donald L. Tucker Center in Tallahassee, Fla. The Seminoles’ game against Maryland marks the first time in more than 14 months that the two teams have met. The last time these two teams met was on Dec. 19, 2004 when the Terps took a 90-88 overtime decision in College Park. Florida State enters its game against Maryland with an 11-2 record (.846 winning percentage) in games played at home including a 4-2 record (.667 winning percentage) in conference games played at home. The Seminoles have already won more games at home this season (11) as compared to last season (nine) and have more conference wins at home (four in six games) than they did during the 2004-05 season (three in eight games). The Seminoles have one more home game – against Duke on March 1 – after Wednesday’s game against Maryland. Florida State won six ACC home games during the 2003-04 season including a 79-75 victory over Maryland on Dec. 28, 2003. Following Wednesday night’s game against the Terps, the Seminoles travel to play at Virginia Tech Saturday Night (Feb. 25; 7:00 p.m.) in one of their final two remaining ACC road games during the regular season.
JUNIOR ALL-ACC CANDIDATE Al Thornton AMONG ACC LEADERS
Junior All-ACC candidate Al Thornton enters Wednesday’s game against Maryland ranked in the top 15 of three different ACC statistical categories: field goal percentage (sixth, .534), scoring (11th, 16.1 ppg) and rebounding (14th, 6.6 rpg). He has scored in double figures in six consecutive (102 points/17.0 ppg) and 15 of the last 16 games (265 points/16.6 ppg). He has scored his career-high of 37 points twice this season – at Boston College (Jan. 14) and at Duke (Feb. 4) and has been named the ACC Player of the Week after both games.
WILSON TO SET SCHOOL RECORD AGAINST MARYLAND
Senior Andrew Wilson will set the Seminole school record for games played in a career with 123 when he checks into Wednesday’s game against Maryland. The sixth-year senior, who made a career-high tying seven 3-point shots in Saturday’s victory over Virginia, enters Wednesday game with a career-high and record setting .552 3-point field goal shooting percentage for the season. The all-time school record for 3-point field goal percentage in a single season is .460 by Tharon Mayes during the 1987-88 season.
LOOK FOR FLORIDA STATE TO…
…Defeat Maryland and gain its 17th victory of the 2005-06 season. The Seminoles have already won more games this season (16) than they did all of last season (12). Florida State had a 14-15 record in Leonard Hamilton’s first year at Florida State, were 19-14 in his second season and finished with a 12-19 record during the 2004-05 season;
…Defeat Maryland and win its seventh ACC game of the season. The last time the Seminoles won more than six ACC games in a single year was during the 1992-93 season when they finished the season with 12-4 record;
…Defeat Maryland and gain a victory over the Terps for the first time since the 2003-04 season. The Seminoles and Terps met only once last season with Maryland taking a 90-88 overtime victory in College Park.
SEMINOLES RANK AS THE ACC MOST IMPROVED TEAM
Florida State, which has already won four more games this season in 23 games (16) than it did last season in 31 games (12), enters Wednesday’s game as the most improved team in the ACC in the conference standings in terms of overall wins and is second for the best improvement in terms of ACC victories. Florida State, which was selected to finish in 11th place in the league by a vote of the media at ACC Operation Basketball, is currently in a tie for fifth place.
SEMINOLES LOOKING FOR SEVENTH ACC WIN AGAINST MARYLAND
Florida State enters Wednesday night’s game against Maryland looking for its seventh ACC victory of the season. Only twice, and not since the 1992-93 season, have the Seminoles won more than six ACC games in a single season. The Seminoles have won at least six games a total of six times (including this season) and have not lost fewer than 10 games in a single conference season since finishing with a 12-4 record during the 1992-93 season.
SEMINOLES SHOOTING WELL FROM THE FIELD
Florida State enters Wednesday’s game against Maryland shooting .495 from the field for the season. The Seminoles shot .519 from the field in their victory over Virginia to mark the fifth time this season they have shot better than .500 percent from the field in an ACC game. Florida State shot a season-high .600 percent from the field in its overtime victory against Virginia (Jan. 11, 30-of-50) and shot .552 from the field against Boston College on the road (Jan. 14, 32-of-58). Florida State is ranked second in the ACC in field goal shooting percentage after ranking fourth with a .452 mark during the 2004-05 season.
SEMINOLES HOLDING THEIR OPPONENTS TO A LOW SHOOTING PERCENTAGE
Florida State held Virginia to a .393 shooting percentage from the field in its victory over the Cavaliers Saturday in Tallahassee. It marked the fourth time this season the Seminoles have held an ACC opponent below 40 percent shooting from the field. In two victories over the Cavaliers this season, the Seminoles held them to a combined .421 (51-of-121) shooting from the field.
SEMINOLES HOLD VIRGINIA DOWN FROM THE ARC
Florida State’s defense limited Virginia to two made 3-point field goals in its victory over the Cavaliers on Saturday. It was the fewest 3-point field goals allowed by the Seminoles this season who enter Wednesday’s game against Maryland allowing 7.9 made shots from the bonusphere for the season. In making only two 3-point field goals, the Cavaliers were held more than four made 3-point shots below their season long average.
FLORIDA STATE BLOCKING OUT THE COMPETITION
Led by Alexander Johnson’s career-high five blocked shots in the Seminoles’ victory on Saturday in Tallahassee, the Seminoles blocked a season-high tying six shots in their victory over Virginia. The Seminoles also blocked six shots in their ACC victories over Virginia Tech (Jan. 7) and Clemson (Feb. 1) and are 4-0 when they block at least six shots in a game.
FLORIDA STATE IN THE STEALS COLUMN
Florida State has earned more steals through the first 23 games of the 2005-06 season (221, 9.60 spg) than they earned during the entire 2004-05 season (216, 6.96 spg). Leading the way in the steals column is the Seminoles’ starting five (Al Thornton, Alexander Johnson, Isaiah Swann, Todd Galloway and Jason Rich) which have combined for more steals (164) than Florida State’s 23 opponents (155 steals).
PROBABLE STARTERS FOR FLORIDA STATE... F #12 Al Thornton (16.1 ppg, 6.6 rpg; 16 pts and 13 rebs vs. Maryland, 12/19/04) F #32 Alexander Johnson (12.5 ppg, 7.0 rpg; 14 pts and 3 rebs vs. Maryland, 12/19/04) G #3 Isaiah Swann (8.3 ppg, 2.0 apg; 12 pts and 3 rebs vs. Maryland, 12/19/04) G #4 Todd Galloway (7.8 ppg, 3.4 apg; 7 pts and 3 asts vs. Maryland, 1/11/03) G #21 Jason Rich (10.7 ppg, 3.0 rpg; 9 pts and 4 rebs vs. Maryland, 12/19/04) ...AND TOP RESERVES G #20 Andrew Wilson (7.0 ppg, 1.9 rpg; 8 pts and 4 rebs vs. Maryland, 12/19/04) F #25 Diego Romero (4.4 ppg, 2.7 rpg; 2 pts and 2 rebs vs. Maryland, 12/19/04) G #10 Ralph Mims (4.0 ppg, 1.3 rpg; 0 pts and 0 rebs vs. Maryland, 12/19/04) G #11 Jerel Allen (3.5 ppg, 1.5 rpg; First career game vs. Maryland) F #15 Casaan Breeden (3.2 ppg, 1.4 rpg; First career game vs. Maryland) F #41 Uche Echefu (2.5 ppg, 1.5 rpg; First career game vs. Maryland)
PROBABLE STARTERS FOR MARYLAND F #22 Nik Caner-Medley (15.4 ppg, 6.5 rpg; 15 pts and 10 rebs vs. Florida State, 12/28/03) F #25 Ekene Ibekwe (11.0 ppg, 6.6 rpg; 13 pts and 3 rebs vs. Florida State, 12/19/04) C # 15 James Gist (8.9 ppg, 4.9 rpg; 11 pts and 7 rebs vs. Florida State, 12/19/04) G #5 D.J. Strawberry (10.7 ppg, 4.0 rpg; 11 pts and 4 stls vs. Florida State, 12/19/04) G # 23 Mike Jones (10.2 ppg, 3.1 rpg; 3 pts and 0 rebs vs. Florida State, 12/19/04)
FLORIDA STATE VS. VIRGINIA -- A SERIES HISTORY The Series: Maryland leads the series, 25-7 Last Game: Dec. 19, 2004; Maryland 90, Florida State 88 (OT) Last Florida State Win: Dec. 28, 2003; Florida State 79, Maryland 75 Last Maryland Win: Dec. 19, 2004; Maryland 90, Florida State 88 (OT) Last Florida State Win In Tallahassee: Dec. 28, 2003; Florida State 79, Maryland 75 Last Maryland Win In Tallahassee: Feb. 12, 2003; Maryland 74, Florida State 72 Florida State vs. Maryland, Current Streak: Maryland has won 2 Leonard Hamilton vs. Maryland: 1-4
FLORIDA STATE VS. MARYLAND – THE LAST GAME
John Gilchrist made two free throws with 6.6 seconds left in overtime to cap a 21-point, 13-rebound performance, and No. 23 Maryland opened defense of its 2004 Atlantic Coast Conference title by squeezing past Florida State 90-88 on Dec. 19, 2005 at the Comcast Center in College Park, Md. Gilchrist’s two free throws snapped a tie, and the Terrapins held on after having held a 13-point lead. Adam Waleskowski led the Seminoles with 23 points. The Seminoles scored the first two baskets in overtime, but Strawberry answered with three free throws in six attempts, then scored off a steal to put Maryland up 85-84. Von Wafer scored on a tip-in for FSU before Mike Jones hit a 3-pointer for Maryland, his only points of the game. After Jason Rich hit a jumper to tie it, Gilchrist made two free throws. But the victory wasn’t ensured until a 3-point attempt by Wafer bounced off the rim. Florida State used a 12-3 run to take its first lead, 79-78 with 1:38 left. The game went into overtime tied at 80. FSU trailed by nine points before Waleskowski made a 3-pointer, two free throws and a lay-up in a 7-1 run that made it 66-63.