Feb. 26, 2006
It was a record-setting day for the Florida State women’s basketball program Sunday at the Donald L. Tucker Center as a record crowd of 3, 781 saw the Seminoles earn a program-best 10 ACC wins with their 71-60 win over No. 17 Boston College (19-10, 6-8 ACC). The Seminoles, winners of their last four games, head into next week’s ACC Tournament with a 19-8 record and a 10-4 league mark. Led by senior Ganiyat Adeduntan’s game-high 20 points, Florida State led the final 36:21 of the game.
“I was just telling my players that I had cold chills because I am so proud of this team and in particular, the seniors,” FSU head coach Sue Semrau said. “Never has a Florida State team won 10 ACC games and when we recruited them four or five years ago they said we want to be the best team that’s ever been here and for them to accomplish that goal is great. They’re also a team that is very focused, very mature and I know that this isn’t all the want to do. We’ve got business to take care of next week but for now, this was a tremendous win over a very good basketball team.”
Junior Alicia Gladden extended her double-figure scoring streak to 11 games with 16 points and a team-high nine rebounds while senior Holly Johnson scored in double figures for the ninth straight game with 15 points in her final game in Tallahassee. Rookie Britany Miller, despite foul trouble, managed 10 points in 15 minutes of play.
Florida State has been a second half team all season long and that fact was clear in Sunday’s victory. The Tribe was up by as many as nine points in the second half but went into the locker with a five-point advantage at 29-24. After a 32 percent shooting performance in the first 20 minutes, the Seminoles returned to the floor and shot 46 percent from the field in the second half.
The final period belonged to Adeduntan, who scored 13 of her game-high 20 points and recorded all of her six rebounds in the second half. Johnson, as she has her entire career, came up big from outside. The Eagles, who were led by Brooke Queenan’s 19 points and 11 rebounds, had pulled to within four points with 13:05 left in the game and Gladden hit a lay up to put the Seminoles up six. Johnson hit back-to-back three pointers giving FSU its first double-digit lead at 10 points with 9:26 left in the game and the Eagles could get no closer than nine points the rest of the way. FSU’s largest lead was 15 points and the Seminoles led by 11 or more points in the final 3:43 of the contest.
Boston College finished the game with a 39-37 edge on the boards but FSU’s defense held the Eagles to their poor shooting performance in their last four contests at .397.
“Again, it really came down to our defense and rebounding,” Semrau said. “We had to maintain that but even when we struggled shooting the ball, we continued to play defense and rebound the basketball.”
Adeduntan went 7-for-7 from the free throw line while fellow senior LaQuinta Neely scored four of her six points with a 4-for-4 performance at the charity stripe. As a team, the Seminoles went 22-for-28 from the line for a 79 percent performance.
The record crowd exceeded Coach Sue’s Tent for Tickets campaign goal in which she spent two nights in a tent outside the Tucker Center until 3,000 tickets were sold. She wanted a big crowd for her senior class. The first class to lead FSU to seven or more ACC victories in four consecutive seasons, this group helped Florida State to three top four finishes in the ACC and have the program poised to not only make its record fourth-straight postseason appearance, but second straight trip to the NCAA Tournament. In their time together, FSU has averaged more than 18 wins per season.
“It’s very special, just the fact that we’ve done this,” Johnson said. “There’s been a lot of tough roads and a lot of things that me, G-Mo (Adeduntan), Quint (Neely) and Hannah (Linquist) have really gone through. But to be able to see where this program’s come, to see all of the fans in the seats and what Coach Sue did for us to get the fans in the seats was just tremendous and was a big boost to look up their and see all of the fans.”
On Wednesday, March 1st, Florida State will head to Greensboro, N.C., for the 2006 ACC Tournament (March 2-5). As the tournament’s fourth seed, the Seminoles have earned a first round bye and will play the winner of Thursday’s NC State/Clemson game on Friday, March 3rd at 4 p.m. The game will be televised regionally.