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Inside the box score: FSU 85, NCSU 78

Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports

1. When NC State cut the 2nd half lead to just five with 8:50 left to play, Xavier Rathan-Mayes took over the game. First he created a three for Devon Bookert. Then he quickly followed that up with a steal on the other end which he took end to end feeding Terance Mann for a layup on a 2-on-1 break. Two possessions later he buried a three and FSU was back up by 11 and the Wolfpack had to call a timeout. That three was an important shot for XRM, as the Noles will need him to continue making them down the stretch. In the past 10 games, XRM has now made 19-44 3s (43%).

2. Malik Beasley scored 22 points, and has now scored 20+ in two of four ACC games. Last year XRM scored 20+ in five regular season ACC games, and once in the ACCT. Beasley is now averaging 17.1 points per game, which is the highest scoring average by a Seminole since Toney Douglas scored 21.5 in 2008-09.

3. Devon Bookert, who has played through injuries since stepping on campus four years ago, began this year with a sprained wrist. Following his junior year he was just fractions of a percentage ahead of George McCloud on the all time list for 3-pt% at Florida State. But with his wrist he began the year just 9-40 (23%). Then came an 8-day break over Christmas. Since then Bookert has made 15-27 (56%) over a 5-game span. His career accuracy stands at 41.9%.

4. Florida State blocked 8 shots, and their block rate now stands at 10.6% on the year. This would be the lowest by a Seminole team since 2007-08. One of the things that I harp on with shot blockers is the need to keep the ball in play rather than swatting it into the stands. FSU did just that last night, as all eight blocked shots stayed in bounds. FSU was only able to gain possession on 3/8, but on those three extra possessions the Noles not only scored seven points (the margin of victory), but the average possession length was just five seconds. For a team which wants to get out and run, this is the best way to do it.

5. FSU won 85-78 in 71 possession game. The 1.20 points per possession scored by the Noles was the most NC State has allowed against any ACC team this season. It's also the most FSU has scored versus an ACC opponent in the past 21 games, dating back to the 2nd game of conference season last year.