Florida State (16-4, 5-2 ACC) was defeated by Louisville (14-6, 5-2 ACC) by a 82-75 score today in Tallahassee, FL.
Sara Bejedi scored the first five points of the game to get Florida State off to a good start in the first quarter. Louisville came back but FSU was able to maintain a working margin for the rest of the quarter. The Seminoles ended the quarter with a 20-14 lead after Mariana Valenzuela and Hailey Van Lith exchanged three pointers.
Former Seminole Morgan Jones came alive in the second quarter. Jones scored Louisville’s final eight points of the half. However, FSU was able to keep pace. Jazmine Massengill hit a jumper to give the Seminoles a 33-29 lead going into halftime.
The teams mostly traded baskets in the third quarter as neither side could maintain a significant lead. However, FSU managed to jump out to a 55-48 lead after a triple from Valenzuela. Bejedi drained a couple of free throws to end the quarter as the Seminoles had a 57-51 lead going into the fourth quarter.
Louisville came out like gangbusters in the fourth quarter. The Cards scored the first seven points of the quarter with the help of a couple of FSU turnovers. The Noles responded with four quick points to take a 61-58 lead. However, UL continued the offensive onslaught scoring six straight points. Makayla Timpson broke the run with a pair of free throws. However UL responded with an 8-2 run to take a 72-65 lead with 3:46 left in the game. Bejedi then responded with five straight points to cut the lead to 72-70. From there the two teams traded baskets. Jones scored on an old-fashioned three point play for the Cards. FSU responded with three straight points. Then Van Lith nailed a huge jumper with 25 seconds left that was the dagger. Florida State couldn’t respond on the next possession and the Cards made their free throws to cap off a tough 82-75 victory.
Sara Bejedi continued her strong play for Florida State scoring 25 points. Makayla Timpson had 12 points and seven rebounds while Ta’Niya Latson chipped in 11 points. Former Seminole Morgan Jones had her best game as a Cardinal with 25 points and 10 rebounds.
The two big keys to this game were that FSU allowed Louisville to shoot 54.2% for the game and the Seminoles only shot 20 free throws for the game. The referees let them play all game. That style of officiating disadvantages Florida State as the Noles rely on free throws for a significant portion of their offense.
Nevertheless, FSU simply couldn’t get a stop in the fourth quarter as the Cards scored 31 points in the quarter. Some of that was due to inspired offensive rebounding from UL but a big part of it was that Louisville was outstanding today hitting midrange jumpers.
Overall, this was the type of game that is expected from the most competitive conference in the nation. Two of the best teams in the conference went at it today and one of them came away with a hard fought win.
Florida State will travel to Charlottesville to face the Virginia Cavaliers on Thursday. The game will tip at 7pm and will be broadcast on the ACC Network Extra.