The first half of this game went about as well as could be hoped for. No. 14 Michigan forced FSU into a half court gaming feeling that they could out-execute the Noles, but Ian Miller wasn't having any of it. He hit a couple of 3s from beyond NBA range, and scored 16 points to give FSU a 37-27 lead going into the break.
But this didn't feel like last night's first half lead vs VCU.
Difference in this game is that Michigan is missing open 3s and Miller can't miss. Probably not sustainable. Gotta get transition buckets— Run the Floor (@RunTheFloor) November 22, 2013
Michigan is arguably the best shooting team in basketball, and living on them missing shots isn't going to last.
In the 2nd half FSU was able to force the action early, and the lead maintained at 10. There was some back and forth, but FSU hit buckets when they really needed them. Until the Wolverines went to a zone.
With about 10 minutes left in the game Michigan went to their patented 1-3-1 zone. And it worked. FSU couldn't figure out how to attack it, and Michigan began chipping away at the lead. They got it down to six at the under-8 timeout, and five at the under-4. Down the stretch FSU got sloppy, Michigan couldn't miss, and Nick Stauskas made a driving layup to send the game into overtime.
Overtime was more of the same. Michigan couldn't miss. They had nine possessions and scored on seven. After a circus three by Ian Miller cut the game to 82-80, FSU fouled with 3.2 seconds left and freshman Derrick Walton missed both shots. FSU got the rebound, but Aaron Thomas's desperation three was wide, and Michigan advances.
Miller finished with 19 points, 5 boards, and 3 assists. Okaro White had a man-sized 18 and 12, and Montay Brandon (who played an exceptional 2nd half) had 14 points and 5 rebounds.
FSU's bigs also played really well. This is the first team FSU has played with multiple true bigs, and Boris Bojanovsky had 10 points and 3 blocks in 29 minutes, while the Ojo had 8 points and 6 rebounds in 15 minutes.
It's easy to feel bad about this game, because sloppiness on FSU's part allowed Michigan enough possessions to send it to overtime. But the reality is that they only turned it over on 18% of possessions, which is easily their best game of the season. The reason FSU was in it in the first place is because they did a relatively good job at taking care of the ball.
The bottom line is that FSU curb stomped the No. 10 team in the nation, and then one night later went toe-to-toe with the No. 14 team in the nation. If you predicted that in the preseason, raise your hand.
FSU (4-1) now plays Northeastern in the 3rd place game on Sunday. Northeastern got here by beating Georgetown and then losing to Charlotte, who will play Michigan for the Puerto Rico Tipoff title.