February 29, 2012 - by
Howard Nabs Honor, Leads FSU into Tourney

Feb. 29, 2012

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GREENSBORO, N.C. (Seminoles.com) – Florida State sophomore forward Natasha Howard was one of five players named to the ACC All-Defensive team on Wednesday, ACC Commissioner John Swofford announced.

Howard, a 6-3 forward from Toledo, Ohio, led the Seminoles in rebounding (9.1 rpg), blocks (1.1 bpg) and steals (1.5 spg). She led the conference in total defensive rebounds (176) and ranked first in the ACC in boards per game average (9.4) in 16 league contests.

Her 12 double-doubles this season also were the most by any ACC player. Howard had 14 games with double-figure boards, including a 17-rebound effort against No. 7 Miami on Jan. 15.

She is the fifth Seminole to nab ACC All-Defensive Team laurels, joining Christian Hunnicutt (2011), Jacinta Monroe (2009-10), Alicia Gladden (2005-06-07) and current assistant coach Brooke Wyckoff (2000-01). Hunnicutt also was named ACC Defensive Player of the Year in 2011.

Howard is the first Seminole to lead FSU in blocks and steals since Wyckoff accomplished the feat in 1998 and 1999.

Joining Howard on the 2011-12 ACC All Defensive Team are Maryland’s Alicia DeVaughn, Virginia’s Lexie Gerson, Miami’s Shenise Johnson and Duke’s Elizabeth Williams. Williams snagged ACC Defensive Player of the Year honors, as well.

Howard and Bravard Honored by College Sports Madness

Howard and senior center Cierra Bravard were named all-conference by CollegeSportsMadness.com on Tuesday. Howard nabbed All-ACC Second Team honors from the web site, while Bravard grabbed All-ACC Fourth Team.

Howard and Bravard earned All-ACC Third Team honors from the conference’s coaches and media on Monday.

Seminoles Look to Tame Wolfpack Again

The Seminoles captured the No. 8 seed in the ACC Tournament this season and will play No. 9 seed N.C. State on Thursday at 3 p.m. in the first round at the Greensboro (N.C.) Coliseum. The winner will face No. 1 seed Duke on Friday at 3 p.m.

Both games will appear on RSN-TV, a collection of regional networks including Fox Sports South, Comcast Sports Net, FSN-Florida and the New England Sports Network.

Games will also be streamed live on Facebook.com/FSUSeminoles through ESPN3.

Florida State edged the Wolfpack on Jan. 27 when junior Leonor Rodriguez buried a 25-foot three-pointer with 1.1 seconds left to lift the Seminoles to a 67-64 victory in Raleigh.

“We’re going in with a fresh outlook and the idea that we need to play our best basketball,” Florida State head coach Sue Semrau said. “We had a tough game against N.C. State up there that we won on a buzzer-beater. It’s important to get that first win. I think teams that play that first day sometimes have an advantage. Obviously, we don’t like the seed we have for the future, but we’ll try to make the most of it.”

The Seminoles historically haven’t had much success at the conference tournament, reaching as far as the semifinals just twice. With a 14-16 record, Florida State will need its best performance yet at the ACC Championship if it wants to keep its NCAA Tournament streak alive. The Noles would have to win four games in four days to capture the tournament crown to earn an automatic bid to the “Big Dance.”

FSU is 6-19 all-time in the ACC Tournament, including a 4-5 mark in the event’s first round. The Seminoles are 0-2 all-time against the Wolfpack, falling to NC State in the quarterfinals in 2006 and 2007.

For more information on the conference championship, visit the official site of the 2012 ACC Women’s Basketball Tournament at www.theACC.com/SheCanPlay. Fans can also follow the upcoming Tournament games on Twitter at @ACCwbb.

For more information on the Florida State women’s basketball team follow @FSU_WBasketball on Twitter.


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