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No. 11 FSU basketball flies by Southeast Missouri

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The Seminoles pull away late...again.

NCAA Basketball: SE Missouri State at Florida State Glenn Beil-USA TODAY Sports

With M.J. Walker out due to a tweaked ankle suffered during the UConn game, Raiquan Gray got the start against the Southeast Missouri State Redhawks. Christ Koumadje started off hot with 6 points in the first three minutes (on three dunks), but the Seminoles then went on a long cold stretch. The ’Noles didn’t connect from deep until Devin Vassell hit with 1:50 left in the half. It was that 1-12 shooting from the three-point line that kept the score mostly in favor of the Redhawks in the first half (they were 7-18 from deep).

SEMO’s largest lead was 11 with 10:14 left in the first half. The ’Noles played with good energy, but gave up several open looks from three. It was rebounding and free throw shooting that allowed the ’Noles to close the lead and enter the half tied at 34.

The Redhawks were able to keep the game close for the first ten minutes or so of the second half, but the Seminoles turned it on and rolled from there. The walk-ons even got into the game with just under three minutes left. The 85-68 final score doesn’t reflect how well SEMO played for most of the game. They ran out of gas down the stretch, and Florida State had several guys step up when it was sorely needed.

Trent Forrest led the way with a career-high 23 points, 8 rebounds, 4 assists, and 3 steals. David Nichols added 13, Christ Koumadje had 12 points (6-6 on dunks), while adding 7 rebounds and 4 blocks, and Vassell impressed with 16 points in just 19 minutes. Mfiondu Kabengele added 9 points and 6 rebounds off the bench.

BOX SCORE

GAME THREAD

UP NEXT: FSU hosts North Florida Wednesday night at 7.