Dec. 23, 2013
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (seminoles.com) –
Florida State guard Aaron Thomas, who averaged 22.0 points, 5.5 rebounds and 1.5 assists while shooting .600 from the field and the 3-point line and .917 from the free throw line in leading the Seminoles to wins over Charlotte and UMass, was named the ACC Player of the Week as announced by the league office. Thomas scored his career high of 26 points and pulled down his career high of seven rebounds (career high of three offensive rebounds) in Florida State’s 106-62 win over Charlotte and totaled 18 points and four rebounds in the Seminoles’ neutral court win over UMass in the Orange Bowl Classic.
Thomas (Cincinnati, Ohio) scored 44 points in 54 minutes played during the two wins including his career-high of 26 points in only 22 minutes played against Charlotte. He was named the Most Valuable Player of the Seminoles’ victory over UMass in the Orange Bowl Classic.
Charlotte (the Puerto Rico Tip-Off Champion) entered the game with a 7-2 record and UMass (the No. 2 ranked RPI team in the country) entered the game with a perfect 10-0 record.
Thomas scored his career high of 26 points in the Seminoles’ win over Charlotte as he made a career-high 10 field goals and made his career high of three 3-point field goals. Thomas was especially effective in the first half as he scored 22 points in 13 minutes of play as he led Florida State to a 52-30 lead at the intermission. He scored nine points in a five minute span that helped Florida State push a seven point lead with 14:17 left in the half to a 21 point lead with 9:25 remaining before intermission. Thomas closed the half with 13 points in the final seven minutes of the half as Florida State pushed its lead to as many as 23 points.
Thomas closed the week as he scored a game-high 18 points as Florida State beat previously undefeated and No. 20/22 ranked UMass, 60-55, in a game played in Sunrise, Fla. He was at his best from the free throw line as he was a perfect eight of eight from the stripe including a perfect two of two with two seconds left in the game to seal the Seminoles’ second win over a ranked team this season.
In the final 10 minutes of the Seminoles’ win over UMass, Thomas totaled eight points, one rebound and one blocked shot as Florida State rallied to gain the come-from-behind victory. Twice he cut Florida State’s deficit to one point and gave the Seminoles a lead with a lay-up at the 6:05 mark then closed out the victory with two of his career-high eight free throws. His blocked shot with 6:14 left kept the Seminoles within a one-point deficit and his ensuing lay-up nine seconds later gave Florida State a one-point lead.
Thomas is Florida State’s third leading scorer with a 12.4 points per game average and ranks second in the ACC with a career high 26 steals. He already has more steals (26) in 11 games this season than he had in 34 games (22) as a freshman.
Thomas is the first Florida State player to earn ACC Player of the Week honors this season.
Florida State plays host to Charleston Southern on Monday, December 30 at 7:00 p.m. at the Donald L. Tucker in its next game and begins ACC play at home against Virginia at 5 p.m. on January 4. Tickets are available for both games.