Sunday, March 1, 2009

TIGERS AMIDST ANOTHER LATE SEASON SWOON

No. 25 FLORIDA STATE 73, No. 13 CLEMSON 68 – Clemson started the season 16-0 and has gone 6-6 since. Sound familiar?

The Tigers, who are known for fast starts and stumbling finishes, added another chapter to their late season woes losing a tough game at Florida State.

Toney Douglas scored 23 points as the Seminoles held off a late rally by the Tigers. The win puts FSU very close to an NCAA bid – their first in 11 years.

"I'd say we're in, but we have more games too," Douglas said afterward. "I know if we'd lost after having an 18-point lead, I'd have cried afterward."

Douglas has now scored 20 or more points in 11 of Florida State's last 13 ACC games and had 19 the other two times.

The Seminoles (22-7, 9-5) led 39-27 at halftime and opened their largest advantage at 51-33 early in the second half, but Clemson closed to within 63-60 on five points by Raymond Sykes in a span of just 12 seconds.

But then it was Douglas, hitting a half dozen straight free throws to ice the game.

Clemson (22-6, 8-6) was led by K.C. Rivers 17 points. Trevor Booker was held to eight points, but had 13 rebounds.

Derwin Kitchen and freshman Chris Singleton each had 10 points for the Seminoles, who swept Clemson for the first time since the 2000-2001 season.

Terrence Oglesby added 12 points for Clemson on 4-of-10 shooting from 3-point distance while Sykes finished with 10 points and four blocked shots.

Booker, the Tigers leading scorer on the season, went scoreless until there was just 1:50 left in the half when he hit a close-range scoop shot.

The win clinched FSU’s second winning ACC record in the past 16 years.


At halftime, Florida State retired the jersey No. 33 worn by Ron King, who led the Seminoles to the 1972 national title game and still holds the school's single-game scoring record of 46 points.

(AP Photos/Steve Cannon)

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