Jan. 18, 2014
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (seminoles.com) – The No. 17/18 Florida State women’s basketball team plays its fourth ACC road contest since Jan. 2 as it travels to Charlottesville, Va., to battle Virginia on Sunday afternoon at 2 p.m. at John Paul Jones Arena.
Sunday’s matchup can be heard on 100.7 FM and through Seminoles.com, with Jonathan Schillace and Melissa Bruner on the call. While the game will not be airing on television or ESPN3, a subscription-based videocast will be available on UVA athletics’ official website – Virginiasports.com.
The Seminoles (14-3, 2-2) are looking to get back above .500 in league play as they face the Cavaliers (8-9, 1-3) in another important game. It will be the 47th meeting between both schools. Virginia holds a 33-13 record in the all-time series, winning three straight since the 2011-12 season.
The Seminoles and Cavaliers have met since the 1990-91 season. Virginia actually won its first 20 games against Florida State, but since the 2000-01 season the series record is dead even at 13-13.
Florida State and Virginia have faced one common opponent so far this season in Pittsburgh. Virginia fell to the Panthers at home, 79-75, on Jan. 5. The `Noles upended Pitt on the road on Jan. 2, winning 78-69.
Under the new 15-team format in the ACC, Florida State plays every ACC opponent once and two teams twice in the regular season. FSU and Virginia happen to be paired twice on the regular-season schedule, as they also face off on March 2 at 12:30 p.m. in Tallahassee in a game that airs on ESPNU.
In an 80-57 loss at No. 20/21 NC State on Thursday, one of the positives was FSU’s ability to take care of the ball. The `Noles committed a season-low 10 turnovers vs. the Wolfpack, breaking their previous low of 15 turnovers in a 63-58 win at Cincinnati.
The Seminoles are trying to avoid their first three-game losing streak since losing four straight from Feb. 9-Feb. 19, 2012.
One of the qualities Florida State has shown in conference play is its offensive rebounding. Guided by the inside play of Ivey Slaughter and Natasha Howard on the glass, FSU is averaging 17 offensive rebounds per game in conference play, the third-highest among ACC teams.
Florida State continues to be a force in the paint on offense. Despite falling to NC State in its last game, the `Noles outscored the Pack, 34-30, on points in the paint. FSU has outscored 14 of its 17 opponents this year on points in the paint.
Heading into its matchup with Virginia, Florida State has done some good work according to the latest RPI. The `Noles are 7-3 against the Top 100 RPI, including wins over Michigan State (39), Florida (63), Cincinnati (73), Stetson (79), UT-Martin (82) Pacific (87) and Miami (92). UVA is just outside the Top 100 at 105th, while FSU is 20th.
Virginia will be looking to get back to the .500 mark when it faces Florida State on Sunday afternoon. The Hoos have two players leading the team with 12.2 points per game in senior guard Ataira Franklin and sophomore guard Faith Randolph off the bench.
Virginia’s lone win in the ACC came at rival Virginia Tech on Jan. 9, winning 67-60 behind Franklin’s 23 points. Virginia was very impressive against one of the nation’s best teams in Notre Dame, falling 79-72 on Jan. 12 in what was a competitive battle. Randolph paced the Hoos in that game behind a career-high 23 points. UVA trailed just 71-69 with 3:49 left in the game before Notre Dame pulled away late.
Like FSU, Virginia can force turnovers well by racking up 10.1 steals per game. The Cavaliers force 20.2 turnovers per game on the defensive end.
Following Sunday’s game, the `Noles have a two-game home stint as they host No. 3/3 Duke on Thursday, Jan. 23, at 7 p.m. On Sunday, Jan. 26, FSU also hosts Virginia Tech at a 2 p.m. tip time. Both games will be streamed on ESPN3.com and through the WatchESPN app.
For more information on Florida State women’s basketball, follow the Seminoles on Twitter at @FSU_WBasketball and like their official Facebook page (Facebook.com/FSUWomensBasketball).