Dec. 4, 2011
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (Seminoles.com) – The Florida State women’s basketball team got back on the winning track on Sunday by holding off Charlotte, 64-62, at the Donald L. Tucker Center.
Five Seminoles scored in double figures, including Olivia Bresnahan, who recorded a career-best 10 points off the bench.
In a back-and-forth game that featured 14 lead changes and three ties, Florida State fought back from an eight-point second half deficit to finally capture a close contest and end a three-game losing skid.
Three of FSU’s five losses this season have come by three points or less, including Wednesday’s 78-75 overtime loss at No. 17 Ohio State.
“It wasn’t necessarily the prettiest win but we needed to win one of those close games down the stretch,” Florida State head coach Sue Semrau said. “Charlotte played great defense, but we got great looks. We had a lot of layups that we missed. We gave them a ton of second chance shots. It wasn’t the best basketball game but we found a way to win.”
Florida State’s first lead of the second half came when Bresnahan pulled up for a jump shot just inside the foul line to put the Seminoles ahead 57-56 with 5:29 remaining in the game.
Bresnahan missed the Ohio State game after injuring her ankle in shootaround a few hours before the game. Her toughness was a vital part of the Florida State attack on Sunday. In addition to scoring her career-best total, she also pulled down four boards, dished two assists, made both her free throws and helped junior guard Alexa Deluzio harass Charlotte’s All-Atlantic 10 guard, Epiphany Woodson, into 3-of-13 shooting.
The Noles and 49ers traded baskets down the stretch, until Bresnahan found sophomore Natasha Howard for a layup with 1:43 remaining to put FSU up 63-62 and keep the host team in front for good.
Still clinging to a one-point lead, Howard ripped down the rebound on a missed jumper by Charlotte’s Amanda Dowe with 11 seconds left and was fouled.
Howard missed the front end of her one-and-one free throw attempt, but junior Chasity Clayton emerged with the ball after a five-second skirmish for the rebound and was tied up by a Charlotte player. A jump ball was called, but the Seminoles kept the possession.
Deluzio was fouled after receiving the inbounds pass and split her free throws to put FSU ahead 64-62 with three seconds left.
Florida State had a foul to give and used it, leaving the 49ers with a final inbounds play and two seconds remaining on the clock. Dowe’s three-point attempt clanged off the rim, ending the game.
“We’ve been in a lot of games where we’re in that position and it’s great to finally overcome it and win one,” Bresnahan said. “I think that helps with our confidence a lot. I think we’re back on track and ready to go now.”
In the first half, Florida State held a 24-15 lead with 7:29 left before the break. FSU went over six minutes without a field goal, though, and the 49ers used a 13-0 run to take a 28-24 lead at the 2:12 mark in the first half.
Charlotte led 30-28 at halftime, and used the inside play of forward Jennifer Hailey to take control early in the second half.
Hailey finished with game highs of 20 points, 10 rebounds, four steals and three blocks. The 49ers held a 48-45 edge on the boards, but shot just 35.1 percent from the field.
FSU tied a season low by committing just 15 turnovers.
Bravard reached double figures for the 30th consecutive game, while Deluzio made the 90th three-pointer of her career, tying her with Jen Robinson for 10th all-time in FSU history
Florida State returns to Ohio for its next contest this Saturday at Akron at 2 p.m. The Seminoles (4-5) will be looking to move back to .500.
For more information on the Florida State women’s basketball team follow the Seminoles on Twitter at @FSU_WBasketball.