Nov. 11, 2001
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Led by senior April Traylor’s team-high 16 points, the Florida State women’s basketball team defeated the Virgin Island All Stars, 72-57, in exhibition action at the Tallahassee Leon County Civic Center Sunday afternoon. FSU newcomer Linnea Liljestrand, who was 3-for-6 from three-point land, and junior Shinikki Whiting, also tallied double digits for the Seminoles with 15 and 12 points, respectively.
“I thought we got what we needed out of a second exhibition game,” FSU head coach Sue Semrau said. “I was able to try some different combinations and again was very pleased with the play of our newcomers. When we took the early lead, I used it as an opportunity to try some different things which allowed them to get back into the game, but I was pleased with how we responded when that happened.”
Florida State trailed just twice in the contest but just by a point and in the opening four minutes of the game. Trailing 8-7 at the 15:56 mark, the Seminoles outscored the Virgin Islands All Stars 17-1 to take a commanding 15-point lead at 24-9 at the 10:43 mark. Liljestrand was instrumental in the FSU run, scoring seven points during that five-minute span. Traylor started the run with four straight points of her own, while sophomore Lauren Bradley got into the action with four points during that stretch. A series of FSU turnovers and their own strong defensive rebounding allowed the All Stars to make a run of their own, pulling to within just two points at 26-24 with just over six minutes remaining in the half. Whiting, however, would not have it as she scored eight of FSU’s next 13 points, giving the Seminoles another double-digit lead at 39-29. The All Stars ran off seven unanswered points in the final 2:49 of the half to pull within three points at the break, making the score 39-36.
Florida State didn’t lead by more than six points for the first 11 minutes of the second half and the Virgin Islands even tied the contest at 45-45 with 13:10 remaining. With just under 10 minutes to play, the Seminoles made a run to put the game out of reach. With the score 53-51, it was Liljestrand again who gave the Seminoles momentum as she scored eight of FSU’s next 12 unanswered points, putting the Tribe up 65-51 with 6:02 remaining. The Virgin Islands could not recover as FSU led by as many as 17 points before taking the 15-point victory.
For the second straight game, Whiting was the team leader in rebounding with seven. She also had a team-leading four assists in the ball game. Morris, who led FSU in scoring in the team’s first exhibition, contributed nine points and six rebounds while Bradley also had another solid performance with seven points and six rebounds for the Seminoles.
The All Stars were led in scoring by Brandy Barnes, who scored 20 points while Natasha Lettsome had a double-double with 14 points and a team-leading 12 rebounds.
Florida State will open the regular-season next Sunday, November 18th vs. St. Mary’s at the Paradise Jam Tournament in St. Thomas of the U.S. Virgin Islands.