No. 12 men’s basketball falls in heartbreaker to No. 20 Florida State
Star sophomore Dwayne Bacon drilled a three pointer with four seconds remaining to lift his No. 20 Seminoles (14-1, 2-0 ACC) over No. 12 Virginia (11-2, 1-1 ACC), 60-58.
Bacon scored a career-high 29 points on 11-of-18 shooting, which included a red hot 6-of-9 mark from behind the arc. He exposed the pack-line defense, calling into question why head coach Tony Bennett didn’t make an earlier adjustment.
Bacon’s game-winner came seconds after freshman guard Kyle Guy’s left corner three put the Cavaliers back on top, 58-57 with 10 seconds left. Florida State coach Leonard Hamilton opted to push the basketball up the court rather than call a timeout. His team caught Virginia backpedaling, and Bacon found enough space to release his shot over junior forward Isaiah Wilkins’ outstretched arms.
Senior point guard London Perrantes had a decent half-court look at the buzzer, but it came up short and brushed the bottom of the net. The Cavaliers fell on their home court for the second time this season — the last against No. 25 West Virginia — after going 15-0 in Charlottesville last season.
Four players scored the bulk of Virginia’s 58 points. Guy finished with a team high of 14 points and Perrantes, junior guard Marial Shayok and junior guard Devon Hall each chipped in ten points. Perrantes dished out four assists but also had four of the Cavaliers’ 13 turnovers. On the interior, Wilkins, redshirt freshman Mamadi Diakite, sophomore center Jack Salt and sophomore forward Jarred Reuter contributed just five, five, zero and two points, respectively.
Virginia shot only five free throws in the entire contest and hit three of them. That was a stark contrast to the Seminoles’ 12-of-24 from the charity stripe. The Cavaliers outshot Florida State percentage-wise, going 45.1 from the floor and 56.3 from three compared to the Seminoles’ 40.8 and 53.3 marks, but the free-throw gap proved costly. Junior guard Xavier Rathan-Mayes converted on five of his six attempts at the line to finish as the only other Seminole in double figures, with 10 points.
Virginia will travel north to start 2017 and will face Pittsburgh (11-3, 0-1 ACC) Jan. 4.