DURHAM, N.C. — Shooting 57.1 percent down the stretch of a back-and-forth game on the road, Florida State Women’s Basketball made winning plays and secured a key 59-56 victory at Duke on Thursday night at Cameron Indoor Stadium.
It was FSU’s fifth win in Durham overall. Big plays late in the game were made by several contributors, include clutch buckets from Bianca Jackson. Morgan Jones led FSU with 13 points, while River Baldwin added eight.
The Seminoles (12-10, 6-6) climbed back to .500 in ACC play, while the Blue Devils (15-8, 6-7) fall to 6-7 in the ACC standings. FSU dominated in the paint, out-scoring Duke 38-24 and executing its game plan of taking advantage inside.
Leading 57-50 with 1:51 remaining, FSU tried to close the door on Duke but the Blue Devils stayed relentless. Miela Goodchild hit back-to-back 3-point field goals to cut the Duke deficit to 57-56 with 1:09 remaining. From there, despite missing on its key offensive possession, the Seminoles made several defensive stops and hit free throws down the stretch.
Duke had one more chance trailing 59-56 with 3.3 seconds left, but freshman Shayeann Day-Wilson stepped out of bounds on a 3-point attempt that actually went in. FSU would in-bound the ball in its front court and run out the clock with O’Mariah Gordon alluding would-be foulers from Duke.
Florida State showcased some strong defensive play early, taking a 13-8 first-quarter lead after holding the Blue Devils to just 19 percent from the floor. Jones got the Seminoles going with five quick points as she was a focal part of the offense early. FSU scored 12 of its 13 first-quarter points in the paint.
Duke out-scored the Seminoles 19-13 in the second quarter to take a 27-26 halftime lead. It was a physical quarter of basketball, which included a few referee reviews. FSU continued to pound the paint for its best scoring chances, registering 22 points inside at the break compared to just five 3-point field goal attempts.
The game remained physical in the third quarter, with Duke holding a 39-37 advantage headed to the fourth. Sammie Puisis began to knock down some looks and Makayla Timpson continued her strong game to help keep the contest tight.
Florida State continues its road trip as it faces Miami on Sunday at noon.