Florida State faced off against the Florida Gators Saturday afternoon. FSU downed their rivals 83-71 at home in the Civic Center. Freshman Scottie Barnes had another strong outing with 17 points and 5 assists, while senior guard M.J. Walker an efficient 17 points on just 5 shots.
FSU hit 8-16 from three-point territory and grabbed 9 steals as they move to 3-0 on the season. After the game, head coach Leonard Hamilton joined the media for post-game comments.
Opening statement: “We had moments in the game where I thought that we showed some pretty good potential. Their style of defense was effective against us. It gives an illusion that there are gaps to drive.”
On the team as a whole: “We showed some stretches where we can be a really good basketball team. But I thought we were indecisive a lot. I am hopeful that we continue to keep winning while we are growing.”
On UF forward Keyontae Johnson: “I told our staff, I was going to let them make that decision. It was totally up to them, and whatever they thought was in the best interest of their team.”
On UF forward Keyontae Johnson: “Several of my players were crying…It was different. I have been involved with several kids who have had injuries like that but not one where there wasn’t a collision. We are just all hopeful and praying that he is okay.”
On Scottie Barnes’ performance: “He is showing that he has the ability that we always knew he had, As a team, we have to get a little bit better all on the same page. He was effective individually, but if we are going to be a really, really good team this year, we have to be more in sync. We gotta still keep working to come together closer as a team.”
On M.J. Walker’s game: “M.J. he has been through the battles. He expects a lot of himself. He is embracing the leadership ole that has been thrown on him. Everybody’s making adjustments. Polite, Gray, Balsa. We have a lot of things going one, a lot of interesting developments. going on with our team. I am trying to learn as much as I can, but playing against very tough competition.”
“We are still working to try to get in a consistent groove with our offensive system.”
“We have to emphasize being a much more aggressive team taking it to the basket. It all works together. In a perfect world, we will execute our offense…We need to be able to run our system and recognize all those things at the same time. Those things we are still sputtering. Once we get in to conference play we have to bring all those things together.”
“We showed the potential that if we move the ball well, penetrate and kick the ball out, we are going to get some of those three-point shots.”
“No one has gone to the NCAA tournament 3-0. No one has won the national championship at 3-0…Right now, I think we are a work in progress. I am excited, happy that we won, but right now I still need to address the areas that we still need to get better in.”