Feb. 13, 2003
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – Tasheika Morris scored a team-high 20 points, but the Florida State women’s basketball team, despite being within four points with four minutes remaining, fell 72-56 to No. 7-ranked North Carolina at Carmichael Auditorium Thursday night. With the loss, the Seminoles fell to 15-7 overall and 7-4 in the ACC while the Tar Heels improved to 22-2 overall and 11-1 in the league.
“That was a great basketball game for 36 minutes,” FSU’s Sue Semrau said. “I just want to credit Carolina for hitting those free throws down the stretch and we couldn’t convert down the stretch.”
UNC had an early 6-2 lead, but no more than four points separated the Seminoles and the Tar Heels for the first five minutes of the game which saw two ties and two lead changes. UNC built a six-point lead at 13-7 at the 14:07 mark, but Morris responded with her first three of the game which began a 7-0 Seminole run and FSU led 14-13. With the score 16-16, the Tar Heels ran off six straight of their own on back-to-back threes, but again, the Seminoles responded to pull within a bucket and then to within a point at 26-25 with 5:30 remaining in the half. In the final five minutes, UNC went on a 10-2 run, including seven straight points and led 36-28 at the break. Morris led all scorers with 10 points, but FSU shot just 38 percent for the half. Led by Candace Sutton’s nine, the Heels shot 58 percent and had a 17-14 edge on the boards.
The Tar Heels opened the second half on a 5-2 run and built their largest lead of 11 on a Coretta Brown three-pointer. Morris scored FSU’s next six straight to make the score 41-36 while the Seminole defense held the Heels scoreless for three minutes. FSU was called for five fouls in the first five minutes of the half, while UNC had none. In fact, the Tar Heels didn’t have a foul called on them until the 10:48 mark while the Seminoles had six, but trailed just 45-40. North Carolina went up by as many as 10 at 53-43 with 7:44 remaining on Brown’s third, three-pointer of the half. Linnea Liljestrand pulled the Seminoles to within seven with a trey of her own, igniting a 7-1 run and FSU was within four with 4:06 left in the game. But the Tar Heels were in the double bonus by the 3:36 mark and the Tribe was forced to foul after UNC scored six straight to lead again by 10 with 3:10 left. Ten of the Tar Heels final 12 points were from the free throw line in the final 2:42 of the contest. The Seminoles could not get their shots to fall and scored just four points in the final four minutes.
“We had to take a gamble,” Semrau said. “We were down four with 4:05 to go and we gambled on a press that they were able to score out of which put us in a situation. But I was disappointed in our late-game execution.”
Katelyn Vujas led FSU with 10 rebounds to go with her eight points. FSU shot just 35 percent for the game and was outrebounded 42-38. UNC was led by Brown’s 22 points and shot 46 percent for the game. Both squads committed 18 turnovers.
FSU will host Maryland (9-14, 3-9) on Sunday at 2 p.m. and the game will be televised regionally.