TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (seminoles.com) – Sophomore Balsa Koprivica scored 13 points and pulled down 10 rebounds and junior Sardaar Calhoun scored 13 points on four made 3-point field goals to lead Florida State to an 80-61 victory over No. 20 Clemson at the Donald L. Tucker Center. The Seminoles led by as many as 38 in winning their school-record 21st consecutive ACC home game. Florida State used a 15-2 run to take a commanding 24-9 lead midway through the first half and cruised to their fourth consecutive win. The win earned the Seminoles a split in the two-game regular season series between the two teams.
Florida State is now 9-2 (5-1 ACC) and Clemson is 9-4 (3-4 ACC). The Seminoles are undefeated since December 29.
The Seminoles’ defense was the story of the game as they held the nationally ranked Tigers to 17 made field goals, .304 percent shooting from the field, only five made 3-point field goals and a .167 shooting percentage from the 3-point line. Florida State blocked seven shots and was credited with six steals.
Florida State took its first double-digit lead (17-7) and the 12:22 mark of the first half and steadily increased its lead throughout the game. The Seminoles led by 15 at the 9:16 mark (24-9) and increased their lead to 20 with 25 seconds to play before halftime (42-22). The Seminoles shot .515 percent in the first half while holding the Tigers to four field goals and a shooting percentage of .167 percent.
Florida State went into the locker room at half leading the Tigers by a 42-24 margin. Calhoun led the team with a career-high 10 points and three triples all in the first half. Both M.J. Walker and Balsa Koprivica had eight at the half. Koprivica contributed two blocks.
The Seminoles continued to play well at the onset of the second half as they scored 14 of the first 16 points of the half to increase their lead to 30 at the 15:45 mark. Florida State increased its lead to 35 at the 13:22 mark (63-28) and to 38 at the 11:21 mark (69-31).
The Seminoles have led each of their 11 games at halftime this season and are shooting 50 percent from the 3-point line in their last four games (36 of 72). Florida State has led three of its last four ACC opponents by at least 20 points (Clemson by 38 points, NC State by 36 and Louisville by 24 points) and has an average margin of victory of 17.8 points in its last four games.
In addition to 13 points each by Koprivica and Calhoun, redshirt junior RayQuan Gray scored 11 points, and senior M.J. Walker totaled 10. Gray has now scored in double figures in three consecutive games while Walker has scored at least 10 points in nine of Florida State’s 11 games. Walker also added three assists against Clemson; he has 12 assists in the last two game after totaling a career-high 10 in the Seminoles’ victory over Louisville on Monday night.
Florida State’s Malik Osborne scored eight points and added four rebounds while finishing tied with junior Nate Jack with a team-high two steals.
Walker also added three rebounds as Florida State outrebounded the Tigers with a 41-32 margin. In the first meeting of the season Florida State was outrebounded, 49-36, by Clemson.
Clemson’s John Newman III led the Tigers in scoring with twelve points, while Clyde Trapp and Aamir Simms tied for a team-high of five rebounds. Newman was the only Tiger who scored in double figures.
Florida State continues ACC play at the Donald L. Tucker Center again on Wednesday, January 27th as it plays host to Miami. The game will be aired on ACC Network at 6 pm.