In the early days of the season the Florida State defense has been high on effort, but the execution is lagging behind. Unfortunately for opponents, the ‘Noles have something they’ve lacked in recent years: depth. Now we are three games deep, and three straight times the Seminoles have allowed the opponent to hang around for a while, but in the end worn them down in the stretch run. That was the recipe again tonight as FSU cruised to a relatively uneventful 100-86 win.
The game got off to a surprising start when Winthrop’s Keon Johnson - who averaged 18.7 per game last year - showed up in street clothes. The Eagles athletic department reported him with a day-to-day injury. But as is often the case, the Eagles rallied without their star player and never backed down.
In the first half they made 5-9 3s and seemed to drop one every time the ‘Noles threatened a run. FSU, for their part, pounded the post, primarily to Michael Ojo. The senior set a new career high before the break with 11 points, and did most of his damage from the FT line as the Eagles had no answer for him on the inside.
At the half FSU led 53-46. Early in the game Phil Cofer limped off the court. He wouldn’t return, but he did remain on the bench and in uniform.
In the 2nd half it was more of the same - pound the post. Some of this was in half court sets, but most was on the secondary break. FSU’s bigs would just race to the block and FSU would get them the ball.
The three centers (Ojo, Chris Koumadje, and Jarquez Smith) combined on the night for 29 points and 18 rebounds.
Winthrop was never able to mount a serious challenge in the 2nd half, and most of it was played with the ‘Noles ahead double digits.
In the end it was 100-86, and the Seminoles advance to 3-0 on the season while averaging nearly 96 points a game.
Dwayne Bacon led FSU with 15 points. Jonathan Isaac and Chris Koumadje each had 14. Michael Ojo had his first career double double with 13 points and 10 rebounds. And Braian Angola-Rodas scored 11.
Florida State made 8-20 3s (40%), and only turned the ball over on 9% of their possessions.
FSU has one more home game - against Detroit on Sunday - before they head to New York City for the NIT Season Tip Off.