Feb. 26, 2013
By: Brandon Mellor, Seminoles.com Managing Editor
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Seventeen days after a lopsided loss at Wake Forest, the Florida State men’s basketball team returned the favor Tuesday night at the Donald L. Tucker Center.
In a 76-62 win over the Demon Deacons (12-15, 5-10 Atlantic Coast Conference), FSU (15-13, 7-8) looked nothing like the team that dropped a 71-46 game in Winston-Salem, N.C. Feb. 9.
“I thought our guys responded really well tonight,” FSU coach Leonard Hamilton said. “I thought our execution on offense was really good. I thought we had good movement on the offensive end.”
The ‘Noles lost that game earlier this month because they couldn’t rebound, couldn’t consistently defend and couldn’t hit their shots. This time around, that trio of negatives turned into a trio of positives.
After experiencing a minus-20 rebound margin in the loss, FSU grabbed 44 boards compared to Wake Forest’s 21in the rematch. Just eight combined blocks and steals on the road last time; 16 combined blocks and steals at home this time. A 32.6-percent shooting clip didn’t help in the first meeting; 48.9 percent shooting got the job done in the second matchup.
Michael Snaer and Okaro White were the only double-digit point scorers in the loss with 13 each and no other player had more than eight points to contribute. But Tuesday, Snaer exploded for 24 points — 19 of which he registered in the second half — on 7-of-10 shooting for his third 20-point outburst in four games.
“Me being efficient is going to be a big part of us able to win,” Snaer said. “So I don’t want to take want to take bad shots or good shots. I want to try to get the easiest shot possible.”
Snaer also got plenty of assistance from his teammates.
White once again scored 13 points to go along with nine rebounds while Boris Bojanovsky tied his career high with 10 points. The 7-foot-3 Bojanovsky also posted three of FSU’s 12 blocks. Kiel Turpin had four of those swats in just 13 minutes of action because of foul trouble.
Travis McKie scored 15 points as Wake Forest’s lone double-figure scorer. As a team, the Demon Deacons were held to just 32.7 shooting from the field.
“McKie, we had to slow him down a bit,” Snaer said. “We did a good job of focusing on their main players and some of our role guys stepped up and really stopped their role guys so it was good for us.”
The Seminoles took a 40-34 lead into halftime before essentially putting the game away midway through the second half. A 23-2 run was simply too much for the Demon Deacons — a team fresh off a victory over previously ACC-unbeaten Miami — to handle.
The blowout victory was FSU’s first triumph in league play of more than five points this season.
“That defense we played for that [second-half stretch] was a lot like the defense we played last year,” White said.
FSU is on the road next with a 2 p.m. game March 3 at North Carolina.