February 3, 2019 - by
Strong Offense Lifts Noles Past Wake Forest

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (Seminoles.com) – The No. 24/21 Florida State Women’s Basketball put together one of its finest offensive performances of the season in a convincing 85-61 win over Wake Forest on Sunday at the Donald L. Tucker Center.

In the victory, the Seminoles (19-3, 7-2) set season highs in field goal percentage (54.7 percent), field goals made (35) and assists (21). Redshirt junior forward Kiah Gillespie collected her ninth 20-point game of the season, leading all scorers with 22 points on 9-of-15 shooting.

Providing an enormous spark off the bench was freshman guard Morgan Jones, who had a career performance. The Jonesboro, Ga., native had season highs in points (12) and rebounds (7) while going 5-of-8 from the floor in 22 minutes.

“She’s just understanding the system and being able to move,” FSU head coach Sue Semrau said of Jones. “She’s just so long, so fast. To be able to use that athleticism in our system has really helped her progression.”

For just the second time in ACC play, FSU had five players in double figures. Aside from Gillespie and Jones, Nicki Ekhomu (17), Nausia Woolfolk (14) and Valencia Myers (10) helped fill up the score sheet.

“That’s what I like,” Semrau said of the collective offensive showing. “I like to spread it around. They don’t care who gets the credit. The 21 assists are what I’m proud of, and the sharing of the ball. That was a big move forward for us.”

Florida State’s defense recorded its seventh consecutive effort of forcing 17 or more turnovers, this time turning the Demon Deacons (10-12, 1-8) over 18 times to the tune of 27 points off of Wake Forest’s miscues. FSU entered Sunday’s game having forced 23 turnovers in consecutive games against Miami and Virginia Tech.

From the get-go, the Seminoles started fast as they out-scored Wake Forest 24-12 in the opening quarter. It was FSU’s most points in the first quarter since scoring 28 at Boston College on Jan. 17.

FSU’s offense was the story throughout, taking a 44-25 halftime lead and closing the game by shooting 10-of-15 (66.7 percent) from the field in a 24-point fourth quarter. Redshirt freshman Sayawni Lassiter, who came off a career-high 11 points vs. Miami, added a career-best six assists in another strong performance on Sunday.

Florida State returns for a home game against No. 7 NC State on Thursday night at 7 p.m.

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