Feb. 2, 2006
ATLANTA, Ga. – Thanks to strong second half performances by Alicia Gladden and Shante Williams, the Florida State Seminoles improved to 13-7 and 4-3 in ACC play with a come-from-behind 59-54 victory at Georgia Tech (13-8, 2-6 ACC) Thursday night at Memorial Coliseum. Gladden and Williams combined for 18 of the Seminoles’ 39 second half points and brought FSU back from nine points down with 13:22 left in the game. Gladden led FSU with 14 points while Williams, Holly Johnson and Britany Miller added 10 points, apiece.
“I absolutely loved our team effort when we got down early in the second half,” FSU head coach Sue Semrau said. “Our fight was tremendous and everybody came in and really contributed. We were in foul trouble and Mara Freshour came in and stepped up, Tanae Davis-Cain stepped up and Shante Williams stepped up huge and we were really able to come back with our defense.”
The Seminoles led 14-6 early and it looked as if they were going to cruise, but FSU scored just six points in the final 10 minutes of the first half while Georgia Tech scored 14 and both teams went into the locker room tied 20-20 at the break. The Seminoles broke the halftime tie quickly in the second half with a bucket by Gladden, but then behind the play of Janie Mitchell, who led all scorers with 15 points, the Yellow Jackets went on a 12-5 run and took control of the game. But Tech’s control was short-lived. Several players contributed over the next five minutes of the game for the Seminoles. Gladden got things started with a lay up, while Davis-Cain hit two big free throws. Freshour sunk a three-pointer and then Gladden hit another lay up and snagged a steal that resulted in a lay up by Williams. All this action and the Seminoles were within a point at 39-38 with 9:22 remaining.
FSU forced a tie with a Ganiyat Adeduntan three-pointer and took a two-point lead with two free throws by LaQuinta Neely with 6:49 left in the game. While Georgia Tech would force two more ties, the Seminoles did not trail the remainder of the game. The Tribe’s final four points were from the free throw line as the team shot a much-improved 79 percent from the charity stripe on 15-for-19.
In the first half, neither team could do anything offensively, and defensively, with the game being called loosely, both teams went at it which resulted in a sloppy game on both ends of the floor. FSU’s only bright spot was Miller who had six points and four rebounds. Mitchell had nine points and seven rebounds in the first half for the Yellow Jackets. Her rebounding effort helped Tech to a 23-19 advantage on the boards in the first 20 minutes but the Seminoles came back to outrebound the Jackets 43-40.
Florida State will host NC State Sunday, February 5th at 2 p.m.