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No. 6 FSU basketball falls short to Clemson

Turnovers, missed free throws, and questionable calls kept the Seminoles from winning this one

NCAA Basketball: Florida State at Clemson Joshua S. Kelly-USA TODAY Sports

The No. 6 Florida State Seminoles fell to the Clemson Tigers, 70-69 in a testy Saturday showing.

The Tigers have now beat the top-3 ACC teams (FSU, Duke, & LOU) in Littlejohn this season. Self-inflicted wounds were the name of the game, with FSU gifting the Tigers 23 points off of 16 turnovers in addition to going 11-18 from the charity stripe.

A plethora of questionable calls allowed Clemson to keep the game close and inch away with the victory. With just over four minutes left in the match-up Anthony Polite scored his first three of the game giving Florida State back the lead, 59-56, but the Tigers refused to back down. Clemson’s Tevin Mack made a clutch shot from beyond the arc to give the Tigers a 2-point lead with under two minutes left in regulation.

With just under 20 seconds, Clemson missed one of two free throws and it appeared FSU scored on the go-ahead basket on a Trent Forrest dunk after a Clemson turnover, but eight minutes of deliberation later the officials ruled an inadvertent whistle.

In the end, the officials ruled a jump-ball, and the Seminoles got the ball as they had the possession arrow. Despite a made Forrest jumper, it wasn’t enough and the Tigers talented Al-Amir made a lay-up as the time expired.

At the 15 minutes mark in the second half, MJ Walker traveled tumbling out of a Tiger turnover and a sleepy Clemson crowd roared with life for the first time as the Tigers shortened the Seminoles’ lead 43-41. Florida State found themselves trailing for the first time of the game, but tied it back up quickly. Devin Vassell made the Seminoles’ first basket in close to nine minutes of game time giving the Seminoles a small, 54-49 lead with just over 10 minutes left.

Heading into today’s afternoon contest, Malik Osborne had struggled from afar missing his last seven 3’s over four games. In the first four minutes of the first, Osbourne went 3-3 from beyond the arc.

While the Seminoles’ offense collectively kept Florida State in control for the entire first half(minus 30 seconds), the ‘Noles turnovers in addition to some questionable calls from the referees allowed the Tigers to keep this game from getting out of their reach. The Tigers scored 11 points off of turnovers and appeared to receive the better end of the calls as the refs missed two block calls on Clemson (potential and-1’s) to keep it fairly close at half.

Despite sitting Trent Forrest and Walker for the final seven minutes of the first half, the Seminoles closed the first half leading, 39-32.

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