CLEMSON, S.C. (AP) – Ama Degbeon scored a career-high 13 points, Kai James had 12 and Maria Conde 10 as No. 7 Florida State won its 15th straight over Clemson with an 86-27 victory Sunday.
The Seminoles (17-2, 5-1 Atlantic Coast Conference) opened up a 28-4 first-quarter lead and never looked back, blowing past the Tigers and ending with the largest margin of victory in their 26 ACC seasons.
Florida State also surpassed the program’s previous record streak of 14 straight against an opponent which it also did against Wake Forest from 2002-2011.
James, Degbeon and Conde all came in off the bench to reach double digits. The Seminoles led 46-12 at the half and 68-20 through three quarters. By the time the final period rolled around, Florida State’s starters were bouncing around on the bench and practicing dance moves to the Sugar Hill Gang’s “Apache.”
The Seminoles pressured Clemson from the jump, forcing nine turnovers and holding the Tigers to one field goal (1-of-10 shooting) in the first 10 minutes. Things did not change at the end with A’Tyanna Gualden forcing a jump ball in the final two minutes that led to her basket.
Degbeon’s showing bettered previous best of 11 points, set against Jacksonville in December 2014.
All of Florida State’s 12 players in the box score scored points.
For Clemson it was a new scoring low in coach Audra Smith’s four seasons. The 27 points were one fewer than when the Tigers lost at Middle Tennessee, 69-28, on Dec. 3, 2014.
Kobi Thornton led the Tigers, who played a third game without leading scorer Nelly Perry, with eight points. Clemson (11-7, 0-5) has lost 38 straight against ACC competition.
THE BIG PICTURE
Florida State: If you thought there’d be a dropoff after the Seminoles 72-65 win over No. 9 Louisville Thursday night, Florida State showed it was just as sharp and fired-up to face struggling Clemson. The Seminoles want to fight for the top of the Atlantic Coast Conference and had things well in gear against Clemson. Leticia Romero and Ivey Slaughter had the offense clicking early and Florida State did not ease up when it opened a 28-4 first-quarter lead, pushing the lead to 35 points by halftime.
Clemson: The Tigers have few answers with their leading scorer, Nelly Perry, out with a separated shoulder. They made just 1 of their first 10 field goals and committed nine turnovers the first 20 minutes. It continues to be an uphill climb for coach Smith, in her fourth season leading the program.
Florida State returns home to play Syracuse on Thursday night.
Clemson finishes two-game home stand against Virginia on Thursday night.
Florida State Sports Information Notes
· With its 86-27 victory over Clemson the Seminoles posted their largest margin over an ACC opponent (59 points) in their 26 years in the league. The previous high was 45, set against Wake Forest (Feb.7, 2010) and Clemson (Jan. 14, 2016);
· The 59-point margin of victory is the eighth largest margin of victory in program history and the second-largest this season. The Seminoles defeated Winthrop 98-35 (63) earlier this season;
· The Seminoles held the Tigers to fewer than 10 points in three of four quarters and have done that 15 times in 76 quarters this season;
· FSU’s 47-14 halftime marked the sixth time this season the Noles have led by 33 points or more at halftime. The largest margin was 40 vs. Western Carolina, followed by 37 at UAB and vs. Winthrop, 36 at Mercer and 35 vs. UNF;
· Ivey Slaughter moved into seventh place on the career rebounding list, passing current Seminole assistant Brooke Wykcoff (804) with six to push her career total to 806;
· Ama Degbeon scored a career-high 13 points to lead the Seminoles. Kai James (12 points) and Maria Conde (10) each registered season-highs;
· The Seminoles held Clemson to just 25-percent shooting from the floor (11-of-44), outscored the Tigers 50-18 in the paint, 40-7 off turnovers (28 forced) and 21-4 in second chance opportunities;
· No starter played more than 15 minutes and FSU’s bench outscored the Clemson reserves 52-16.
· All 12 Seminoles figured in the scoring, marking the fourth time this season that every member of the team made it into the scoring column.