Bonus basketball was the theme on Saturday afternoon in Tallahassee, as the Florida State Seminoles (13-4 2-3 ACC) beat the Syracuse Orange (12-6 1-4 ACC) 101-90 in double overtime. The Seminoles were led by Guard Braian Angola, who scored five of his 24 points in the second overtime, while Syracuse Guard Ty Battle led all scorers with 37 points.
Both teams struggled offensively most of the first half with Syracuse breaking the scoreless tie with over three and a half minutes gone in the first half. Battle hit a contested three pointer to give the Orange a 3-0 lead. But after that three, the only points either team scored over the next two minutes were a pair of free throws by Seminoles' Forward Phil Cofer.
By the 10 minute mark of the first half, neither had scored more than 10 points. As a matter of fact, the Seminoles started this game shooting two for thirteen from the field, while the Orange was only slightly better starting the game two for nine .
Both teams finally got over the double digit mark in points after Seminoles Guard P.J. Savoy made a jumper with over eight & a half minutes left in the first half. And on the next possession, Syracuse Guard Frank Howard followed with a jumper of his own.
Those two jumpers seemed to spring some better shooting between both teams because within the next 90 seconds both teams had a player hit a three pointer. Plus the Seminoles got a dunk from Center Christ Koumadje to take a 16-13 lead with over seven minutes left in first half.
The Seminoles & the Orange did take a turn back to bad shooting after the dunk by Koumadje. And neither team changed the score count until nearly 90 seconds went off the clock since that dunk. But Cofer hit a free throw, then followed that point with a three pointer, giving the Seminoles a seven point lead. Florida State extended that lead to eight. Then at the end of the half, thanks to hitting five of their last six shots including another dunk by Koumadje, the Seminoles took a 10 point halftime lead to the locker room.
Florida State was able to build their 31-21 halftime lead by out-rebounding Syracuse 20-15 but also by grabbing 10 offensive rebounds & making good on second chance points. Unfortunately for Florida State, that 10 point lead shrunk to one because the Orange went on a 13-4 run to start the second half. In that run, the Orange got seven points from Battle.
The Orange eventually took a one point lead on free throws from Forward Oshae Brissett. The Seminoles did take the lead back on a three pointer from Forward Mfiondu Kabengele but the game only stayed 38-36 briefly because the Orange went on another run, this one a 7-0 run, meaning with over seven minutes gone in the second half, Syracuse out-scored Florida State to start the second half 24-7.
The Syracuse lead got as high as seven but the Seminoles kept it close with under 10 minutes left in the game when they got a dunk from Koumadje & a layup by Cofer. And after Syracuse took a six point lead with just under eight minutes, the teams took turns with the lead but neither got a lead larger than four during the waning moments of the game.
With just five minutes left in the second half, the teams were tied at 59 but the Seminoles took a two point lead on free throws from Angola. Koumadje added two more free throws but the Orange countered with a jumper from Howard, with just over four minutes left in the game, leaving the Seminoles lead at two.
Florida State, in just over a minute, got two dunks from Koumadje & with over one minute left in the second half, the Seminoles led 70-65. But the Orange get a layup by Battle & free throws from Guard Howard Washington to cut their deficit to one. But Cofer hit a three pointer with 28 seconds left & it looked like the Seminoles four point lead would hold up. But Seminoles Guard C.J. Walker missed one of two free throws to leave the door open for the Orange. And trailing by three, Battle hit a three pointer with six seconds left in regulation to tie the score at 74. Florida State had a chance to win it in but Forward Mfiondu Kabengele missed a layup as time expired.
At the start of the first overtime, Syracuse grabbed a four point lead, but after another Koumadje dunk, the Seminoles tied the game at 78, only to see the Orange, after a Battle jumper, take another two point lead. And it took a jumper from Florida State Guard Trent Forrest to tie the score at 82 & force a second overtime.
The second overtime started slowly as the Seminoles took the lead on free throws, but after a layup by Cofer, the Seminoles were never threatened again to relinquish the lead, finishing the Orange off after dunks by Kabengele & Forrest.
The Seminoles will look for another ACC win when they visit Boston College on Monday night 7pm.