TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Charleston Southern trailed by just two points at halftime and out-rebounded No. 24 Florida State by 13 but the Seminoles shot 67 percent in the second half to pull away and prevail, 69-58, Monday at the Donald L. Tucker Center.
CSU (4-6) led by as many as four points in the first half and capped the opening period on a 6-0 spurt to close within 28-26 at halftime. The Bucs were down 30-29 38 seconds into the second half following a Christian Keeling three-pointer but FSU (10-1) ripped off a 23-4 run to take control. The Seminoles hit eight consecutive shots at one point and frustrated the Bucs into 2-of-13 shooting to start the stanza.
CSU head coach Barclay Radebaugh was proud of his team's effort. Playing without Phlandrous Fleming Jr., the Bucs' second leading scorer and rebounder, they out-rebounded FSU 39-26 overall and 15-4 on the offensive glass. CSU also held the 'Noles to 39 percent shooting in the first half as part of a spirited showing.
"Tonight was good for us," Radebaugh said. "We're one of the youngest teams in the country and we grew up a bit tonight. You take out seven or eight minutes where we couldn't attack their zone and it could have been even closer."
"I thought we were tremendous with some of our goals with the exception of turning the ball over," Radebaugh continued. "We turned it over too many times to really have a chance but plus-13 on the boards against Florida State is a significant step for a young team. We can and will take a lot away from this."
How It Happened
- Terance Mann's layup – off one of CSU's 21 turnovers – jumpstarted FSU's decisive 23-4 run. The Seminoles had five dunks over that 8:14 stretch as their zone frustrated the Bucs into mistakes that led to transition opportunities. Trent Forrest capped the surge with a layup to put FSU up 53-33 at the 10:15 mark.
- Following the rough patch, CSU responded to whittle the deficit to 61-48 on a Keeling lay-in off a Travis McConico steal with 5:05 remaining. Braian Angola recorded a three-point play and Phil Cofer threw down a dunk, though, to push FSU back up by 18 just 46 seconds later.
- CSU scored the game's final seven points and held FSU scoreless for the final 3:20 to account for the final margin.
- In the first half, CSU showed good patience against FSU's long, athletic roster to build an 18-14 lead with 9:21 left. McConico and Keeling combined for 16 of the Bucs' first 18 points, with McConico connecting on three treys during that span. The last of those triples came off a pretty cross-court feed from Jamaal David, who made his first career start at point guard.
- After FSU answered to take a 28-20 lead, CSU held the Seminoles scoreless for the final 3:29 of the half to close the gap to two at intermission. Javis Howard and McConico sandwiched jumpers around a Keeling drive to give CSU momentum.
Inside the Numbers
- Keeling led all scorers with 21 points on 8-of-15 shooting. It was the sophomore's fourth consecutive 20-point game and the 14th of his career.
- McConico matched season-highs with 17 points and five triples while adding a game-high nine rebounds.
- David, a redshirt freshman, mostly handled FSU's pressure and made a number of terrific passes en route to finishing with eight points, four rebounds and four assists. The four assists were a season high.
- Cofer (19 points) and Mann (17 points) combined for 36 points on 15-for-22 shooting to pace FSU. Mann also handed out seven assists.
- FSU handed out 21 assists on 27 made field goals. The 'Noles made a gaudy 16-of-24 attempts in the second half.
CSU returns home to play its final non-conference game Thursday against Johnson & Wales (N.C.). Tipoff at the Buc Dome is slated for 7:30 p.m.