TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (Seminoles.com) — A stark advantage on the glass by rival Miami was the ultimate difference on Thursday night as Florida State Women’s Basketball fell to the Hurricanes, 59-52, in a physical battle at the Donald L. Tucker Center.
Entering Thursday’s game having out-rebounded 14 of their first 15 opponents, the Seminoles (8-8, 2-4) were exploited on the glass by a 47-30 margin.
“I give credit to Miami for really attacking the glass,” FSU Head Coach Sue Semrau said. “We did an extremely poor job of rebounding the basketball, and I thought that was the difference in the game.”
The loss snaps Florida State’s seven-game home win streak vs. Miami, with its last loss to its conference rival at The Tuck occurring in 2014. FSU now leads the all-time series 48-17.
Miami’s Kelsey Marshall lifted the Hurricanes (10-6, 3-3) from the beginning with a game-high 21 points.
The rivalry matchup was predicated on strong defense from both teams, with Miami shooting 33 percent while FSU shot 32 percent. FSU forced 20 Miami turnovers but committed 16 of its own. The Seminoles allowed 19 offensive rebounds to Miami, which led to 14 second-chance points.
Florida State had its chances down the stretch of the game. Despite a dagger 3-point field goal by Miami’s Destiny Harden to give UM a 54-46 lead with 4:14 left, the Seminoles tried to chip away. Morgan Jones converted two free throws with 2:31 left to cut the deficit to 54-48, and then FSU point guard Sara Bejedi was fouled and made one of two frees throw to make it 54-49 with 2:02 left.
A missed 3-pointer by Miami’s Mykea Gray was rebounded by the Hurricanes with 1:19 remaining, and a subsequent foul by FSU put Lola Pendande at the line where she made both free throws.
Later, a layup by O’Mariah Gordon with 43 seconds left cut the FSU deficit to 57-52, but it was too much to overcome.
Florida State returns to the Tucker Center on Sunday at 2 p.m. vs. Clemson.