December 18, 1998
MALIBU, Calif. –– Junior Latavia Coleman scored 21 points and senior
Tamara Gracey added 18 points off the bench, but the Florida State
Seminoles fell to 3-5 on the year with a 75-72 loss to Pepperdine. The
Waves improved to 7-2 with the victory.
Pepperdine started the game with a three-pointer, but Florida State went
on an 11-1 run to take a seven point lead at the 16:26 mark. The Waves
regained the lead at 16-15 with 12:23 to go in the half and went up by
three when Gracey hit a jumper for the Seminoles. But the FSU scoring
hit a drought as the squad failed to score another field goal until the
4:21 mark. During that eight-minute stretch, FSU scored just three
points off of free throws while Pepperdine took a comfortable 12 point
advantage and went into the lockerroom leading by nine, 36-27, at the
Florida State came out firing in the second half, scoring 10 of the
first 12 points to pull within one at 38-27 with 16:44 remaining.
Coleman gave FSU the lead at 44-43 with a three-point play with 14:48 to
play and the Seminoles went on to match their largest lead of seven
points. The game saw just one more tie and Pepperdine took a brief 61-60
lead with just over five minutes to play, but FSU took it right back and
went up again by five points. Trailing 68-63, the Waves scored eight of
the game’s next 10 points to take the lead for good at 71-70 with 1:27
to play. After falling behind by four, FSU pulled within a basket with
:30 remaining, but was forced to foul.
“Pepperdine had a great game plan,” FSU Head Coach Sue Semrau said. “I
thought it took a lot of energy for us to come back in the first part of
the second half. It’s always tough to shoot well on the road, but we
have to play better defense.”
Pepperdine was led by Rasheeda Clark’s game-high 23 points and five
rebounds. Dee Braxton and Nadja Morgan added 11 and 10 points,
“Clark is an exceptional player,” Semrau said. “Pepperdine is a real
nice team. We are a program that is really working on building and we’re
real excited that this was a close game.”
Florida State was forced to shake up the starting lineup for the first
time this season due to the injury of starting freshman guard April
Traylor, who suffered a severe contusion to her right lower back in
Monday’s game vs. South Florida. FSU went with a smaller, but quicker
lineup with guards Lakesha Springle and Jen Robinson, while Angela
Sutton, Brooke Wyckoff and Latavia Coleman rounded out the lineup.
Traylor is expected to be able to play Saturday vs. Cal State Fullerton.
Wyckoff and Robinson each contributed 10 points for Florida State.