Jan. 16, 2005
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Senior Roneeka Hodges scored seven of her FSU record 39 points in overtime to lead the Florida State women’s basketball team to a thrilling 95-91 win over No. 15 Maryland Sunday afternoon at the Donald L. Tucker Center. The Seminoles came back from 12 down in the second half for the win and improved to 16-2 overall and are atop the ACC standings with a 3-1 league mark. The Terrapins fell to 12-3 overall and 2-2 in ACC play.
“One of the things that we talk about a lot is that plays don’t make game-winners but the players do,” FSU head coach Sue Semrau said. “Boy, down the line, we came up with big, big plays tonight. I can’t say enough about this team and their heart and their never-say-die attitude. They find a way to step in and get it done when they need to get it done and I just could go on and on.”
The Seminoles shot an impressive 75 percent in the overtime period and trailed just 18 seconds of it. Hodges’ lay up with 3:24 left in the OT proved to be the winner because the Seminoles wouldn’t trail again. The Terrapins were within one at 89-88 with under a minute to play but Linnea Liljestrand put the game out of reach when she hit one of her three, three-pointers to put the Seminoles up four points with 41 seconds.
Alicia Gladden, who fouled out of the game with 3:48 left, had 17 points in 27 minutes while Seminoles’ Ganiyat Adeduntan and Holly Johnson added 13 and 12 points, respectively. Johnson had a game-high seven assists and just one turnover in 43 minutes of play.
“What we wanted to do was face better and better competition as we got better and better and see it as a test,” Semrau said. “Obviously, they’ve (Maryland) been ranked all year and people think they are a very good basketball team. Watching them on film, they are so tremendous. They’ve got great guard play, a great post player and we wanted to step up to the challenge and it was a great opportunity for us to do that and we had to fight. It just tells a lot about our team and who we are.”
FSU led 36-34 at halftime but came out cold offensively in the second half and couldn’t connect from anywhere. With the score tied at 43 at the 16:49 mark, Maryland went on a 13-3 run to go up 10 with 11:09 left in the game. Shay Doron, who also set a school record with 39 points, hit a three-pointer a minute later to put the Terps up 12 and it seemed as if the game was out of reach. The Seminoles, however, didn’t think so.
Freshman Nikki Anthony cut the lead to single digits with two free throws and back to back three-pointers by Liljestrand and Hodges pulled the Tribe to within five with 7:41 left. The two teams traded baskets for a bit and the Seminoles just couldn’t seem to get any closer than four points. Johnson had kept the Seminoles close with strong free throw shooting but her three-pointer with 1:07 left to cut the lead to 76-73 seemed to give the Seminoles the push they needed.
Doron answered, as she did all night, with a jumper to put Maryland up five with 43 seconds remaining. Ganiyat Adeduntan answered for the Seminoles with a strong move to the basket. She hit the lay up, got the foul and hit the free throw to pull the Tribe within a bucket with 28 seconds left. Maryland’s Kalika France was fouled immediately and missed the front end of the one and one. Hodges rebounded and FSU called a timeout to set up the final play which was designed for who else but Hodges. The New Orleans, Louisiana native slashed inside for a lay up with eight seconds left on the clock and Doron’s desperation jumper fell short and the game went into overtime.
“Well, obviously, Florida State played a tremendous game,” Maryland head coach Brenda Frese said. “You saw the poise and the confidence and the better team won today. Down the stretch they really kept their composure and really played together as a team. Anytime you go on the road in the ACC, it’s a battle. Every game could go down to the wire. From our end, I was very disappointed in our defensive effort.”
The game started as if it would be Florida State’s day. The Seminoles came out on fire and outscored the Terps 7-1 in the opening minutes of the game. Hodges, who led all players with 18 first half points, had 10 points in the first five minutes and the Seminoles had their largest lead of 12 points at 19-7. Gladden was also a force with 10 points in the half. FSU’s relentless defense forced 14 first half Maryland turnovers but the Seminoles couldn’t contain the Terps on the boards. Center Crystal Langhorne had six big rebounds to go with her 10 points in the first half to lead the Terrapins to a 17-11 advantage on the boards. Maryland also went to the free throw line 10 times while FSU was sent to the line just twice. Down nine at 32-23 with 4:23 on the clock, the Terps went on an 11-0 run to tie the game and tied it again at 34-34. Hodges sunk a 10-foot jumper to give FSU the two-point halftime advantage.
Langhorne had 19 points for Maryland while France finished the game with 10.
The Seminoles will host 13-2 North Carolina Thursday, January 20th at 7 p.m. The Tar Heels, 1-1 in ACC play, are ranked No. 9 in this week’s AP poll.