December 2, 2004 - by
Seminoles Travel To Play Ole Miss Saturday In Basketball

Dec. 2, 2004

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Florida State concludes its’ four-game road trip as it travels to play Ole Miss at the Tad Smith Coliseum in Oxford, Miss., Saturday Dec. 4. The Seminoles enter the game against the Rebels with a 3-3 record and are fresh from a 70-69 victory over Minnesota in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge. Florida State’s game against Ole Miss is its fourth road game since Nov. 27 – a span of four games away from home in eight days. The game marks only the fourth time the Seminoles and Rebels have played in the sport of basketball and is only Florida State’s second ever trip to Oxford. The Seminoles have not played at Mississippi since Feb. 14, 1951 – a span of more than 50 years. Florida State’s trip to the state of Mississippi is its first since the 1991 season when the Seminoles played at Southern Mississippi during their final season of membership in the Metro Conference. Following Saturday’s game against Ole Miss, the Seminoles will not play a game until they play host to Florida International Dec. 12, at 3:30 p.m. at the Donald L. Tucker Center in Tallahassee. The Seminole players will take the week off to take their final exams.

Sophomore guard Von Wafer scored his career-high of 19 points to lead Florida State over Minnesota, 70-69, in the 2004 ACC/Big Ten Challenge. Wafer scored eight points in the final 7:15 of the game as the Seminoles recovered from as much as a 14 point deficit to gain the victory. During the final 7:15 of the game, Wafer hit a 3-point shot to pull Florida State within 11 at 63-52 (4:24 remaining); a jumper to bring the Seminoles within one a 63-62 (3:17 remaining) and a second 3-pooint shot to break a 65-65 tie and put Florida State up 68-65 (1:38 remaining). Florida State did not relinquish its lead from that point forward and won its first road game of the season.

Florida State’s victory over Minnesota helped the ACC claim its sixth consecutive ACC/Big Ten Challenge. The Seminoles victory over the Gophers was the third of seven for the teams in the nation’s most dominant basketball conference. The Seminoles are now 4-2 during the history of the ACC/Big Ten Challenge.

…Win its second consecutive game and up its record to 4-2 on the season. A win would give the Seminoles their first winning streak of the season;
…Defeat Ole Miss and win road games in consecutive outings for the first time since December of the 1997-98 season. Florida State won at Southwestern Louisiana (80-71, Dec. 29, 1997) and at DePaul (66-55, Dec. 31, 1997) in back-to-back road games on their way to the 1998 NCAA Tournament;
…Defeat Ole Miss for the second consecutive season. The Seminoles defeated the Rebels, 66-60, Dec. 1, 2003 in Tallahassee;
…Gain a victory on an SEC court for the first time since Jan. 27, 1992 when the Seminoles defeated Florida in Gainesville, 68-67.

Florida State has made 75 percent of its free throw attempts in the last two games (27-of-36) and seems to have found a rhythm from the free throw line. The Seminoles made a season-high tying 19 free throws and shot a season-high .760 from the line against TCU and followed that performance with .727 shooting night in their victory over Minnesota. Freshman guard Isaiah Swan leads the team with a perfect 1.000 shooting percentage from the line (14-of-14) while fellow freshman Ralph Mims is shooting .833 from the line (10-of-12).

Seminoles Feeling It From the Line
Games FTM FTA Pct. Notes

Last 2 27 36 .750 Season-high .760 against TCU, Nov. 28, 2004
First 4 51 86 .593 Below .600 shooting in three of first four games
Improv. +.157 Seminoles shooting .639 for the season from FT line

Florid State shot .509 from the field (27-53) against Minnesota Tuesday night to mark the first time the Seminoles had shot above 50 percent on an opponents’ home court since Jan. 3, 2004 at Florida. It marked the second time this season the Seminoles have shot better than 50 percent in a single game (also .593 in their victory over Shawnee State, Nov. 24). Florida State enters Saturday’s game against Ole Miss shooting .486 from the field and is shooting nearly five percentage points higher than it did last season. The Seminoles shot .438 from the field last season. Not only are the Seminoles shooting nearly five percentage points higher this season as compared to last season, but they are making more field goals per game while taking fewer shots through the first six games of the season.

Florida State Shooting Straight From Floor
Season FGM FGM/Game FGA FGA/Game Pct.

2004-05 157 26.2 323 53.8 .486
2003-04 815 24.7 1,860 56.4 .438
Improv. +1.5 -2.6 +0.48

Florida State, which finished fifth in the ACC in steals with an 8.82 steals per game average last season, once again ranks among the leaders in the conference with an 8.8 steals per game average this season. The Seminoles have recorded at least seven steals in each of their five games and were credited with a season-high 13 thefts in their victory over Shawnee State Nov. 24. The Seminoles’ point guard tandem of Isaiah Swann (eight steals) and Todd Galloway (eight steals) have proven to be Florida State’s chief thieves during the early part of the season.

Seminoles’ Stealing Under Hamilton
Season Steals Games SPG Notes

2004-05 53 6 8.8 Isaiah Swann leads team with 1.5 spg average
2003-04 291 33 8.8 Tim Pickett led team with 2.5 spg
2003-03 273 29 9.4 Tim Pickett led team with 2.8 spg
Totals 617 68 9.1 Seminoles average 205.7 steals/season under Hamilton

Third-year head coach Leonard Hamilton led the Seminoles to a come from behind victory against Minnesota as the Seminoles recovered from a 41-38 deficit at halftime and were down by as many as 14 in the second half. After being outscored by three in the first half, the Seminoles outscored the Gophers by four in the second half to win the game. During the first three years of Hamilton’s tenure at Florida State, the Seminoles have recorded 10 wins after trailing at halftime. Florida State trailed North Carolina on Jan. 22, 2004 by as many as 14 points at halftime and by as many as 24 in the second half to gain the victory. Florida State’s comeback against the Tar Heels ranks as the largest in school history.

Seminoles’ Halftime Comebacks Under Hamilton
Date Opponent Halftime Deficit Final Score

Dec. 15, 2003 vs. Birm. Southern 25-33 (-8) W, 56-47
Jan. 21, 2003 vs. Clemson 33-36 (-3) W, 60-59
March 1, 2003 vs. Virginia 28-38 (-10) W, 85-72
Dec. 1, 2004 vs. Northwestern 26-31 (-5) W, 71-53
Dec. 14, 2004 at Miami (Fla.) 31-35 (-4) W, 67-58
Jan. 25, 2004 vs. Wake Forest 37-36 (-1) W, 75-70
Jan. 22, 2004 vs. North Carolina 35-49 (-14) W, 91-80 (OT)
Feb. 3, 2004 vs. Georgia Tech 35-33 (-2) W, 81-65
March 17, 2004 at Wichita State 27-37 (-10) W, 91-84 (2 OT)
Nov. 30, 2004 at Minnesota 38-41 (-1) W, 70-69

F #25 Diego Romero (8.8 ppg, 5.3 rpg; First career game against Ole Miss)
F #32 Alexander Johnson (6.0 ppg, 5.0 rpg; 19 pts and 2 rebs vs. Ole Miss., 12/1/03)
G #4 Todd Galloway (7.2 ppg, 2.2 apg; 7 pts and 4 assts vs. Ole Miss, 12/1/03)
G #20 Andrew Wilson (3.0 ppg, 2.0 rpg; 6 pts vs. Ole Miss, 12/1/03))
G #22 Von Wafer (10.4 ppg, 2.2 rpg; 4 pts and 1 reb vs. Ole Miss, 12/1/03)
F #2 Antonio Griffin (2.0 ppg, 0.7 rpg; First career game against Ole Miss)
G #3 Isaiah Swann (7.0 ppg, 2.0 rpg; First career game against Ole Miss)
G #10 Ralph Mims (6.2 ppg, 2.8 rpg; First career game against Ole Miss)
F #12 Al Thornton (8.2 ppg, 4.0 rpg; 2 rebs vs. Ole Miss, 12/1/03)
G #21 Jason Rich (4.8 ppg, 2.0 apg; First career game against Ole Miss)
F #51 Adam Waleskowski (6.7 ppg, 4.2 rpg; 2 pts and 3 rebs vs. Ole Miss, 12/1/03)
F #54 Anthony Richardson (5.0 ppg, 2.4 rpg; 4 pts and 7 rebs vs. Ole Miss, 12/1/03)

F #11 Londrick Nolen (7.3 ppg, 5.0 rpg; First career game against Florida State)
F #44 Tommie Eddie (9.0 ppg, 2.8 rpg; 2 pts vs. Florida State, 12/1/03)
G #10 Todd Abernethy (11.5 ppg, 4.0 apg; 11 pts and 4 assists vs. Florida State, 12/1/03)
G #15 Brandon Patterson (7.8 ppg, 2.0 apg; First career game against Florida State)
G #20 Bam Doyne (3.8 ppg, 0.3 rpg; 22 pts, 0 pts and 0 rebs vs. Florida State, 12/1/03)

The Series: Florida State leads 2-1
Last Game: Dec. 1, 2003; Florida St. 66, Ole Miss 60
Last Florida State Win: Dec. 1, 2003; Florida St. 66, Ole Miss 60
Last Ole Miss Win: Feb. 14, 1951; Ole Miss 79, Florida St. 75
Last Florida State Win In Oxford: NA
Last Ole Miss Win In Oxford: Feb. 14, 1951; Ole Miss 79, Florida St. 75
Florida State vs. Ole Miss, Current Streak: Florida State has won 1
Leonard Hamilton vs. Ole Miss: 1-0

Alexander Johnson scored a career-high 19 points to lead Florida State to a 66-60 win over Mississippi. Dec. 1, 2003 at the Leon County Civic Center in Tallahassee. The 6-10 Johnson, then a freshman, hit all five field goal tries and made 9-of-10 free throws as Florida State moved to 6-0 on the season, its best start in 15 years. Tim Pickett scored 12 points and Michael Joiner added 10 for the Seminoles, who shot 48.8 percent from the field and 50 percent from 3-point distance. But they had to repel a late surge by Ole Miss to collect the win. After trailing by double figures during much of the game, the Rebels closed to within 61-57 on a 3-point basket by Kendrick Fox with 3:01 left in the game. But Florida State hit five of six free throws in the final minute to put the game away. Justin Reed led Ole Miss with 18 points and freshman guard Todd Abernethy added 11. Florida State led 34-20 at halftime, holding Mississippi to just 26.7 percent shooting, but the Rebels shot 59.3 percent in the second half to cut into the lead.

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