TALLAHASSEE, FL – Florida State senior Michael Snaer banked in a three-pointer at the buzzer to lift the Seminoles to a 60-57 victory over Clemson on Thursday at the Donald L. Tucker Center. The win dropped the Tigers to 10-8 on the season, 2-4 in the ACC. FSU improved to 11-7 overall, 3-2 in conference play.
With the game knotted at 57 apiece, Clemson could only muster a contested three-pointer from the corner to give the Seminoles possession with eight seconds to go. Snaer walked the ball up and took a 30-footer from the right wing – nearly the exact same spot in which he drilled a three a year ago in a win over Duke – to hit the game-winner.
Devin Booker, who played 28 minutes despite a high fever all afternoon, scored 15 points on 7-of-10 field goal shooting. K.J. McDaniels added 15 for Brad Brownell‘s club, who struggled to 32 percent shooting in the second half after leading by eight at halftime. It was only Clemson’s second loss of the season when leading at intermission. The Tigers were 0-for-8 after halftime from three-point range.
Scoring was once again tough to come by early on, as Clemson turned the ball over four times in the first five minutes of the game. Florida State took a 9-5 lead behind a couple of Okaro White field goals, but the Tigers answered with a 7-0 run sparked by the freshman Filer. McDaniels came to life in the latter stages of the first half, burying a three on one possession before taking a nifty feed from Filer on the next for a jam inside.
With Clemson ahead 18-16, McDaniels stroked a three-pointer from the left corner to push the Tigers” lead to five. The run extended to 16-0 after Booker scored three baskets inside – including one on a lob from Hall and the other on a find from Jennings. FSU ended the half on a 5-0 run to cut the lead to 29-21 at intermission.
Clemson opened the second 20 minutes with four straight points, including a breakaway layup by Damarcus Harrison. But, the Tigers were whistled for seven fouls within the first four minutes of the half, sending FSU to the line very quickly. Bernard Sullivan sank two free throws to make it 40-29, and Josh Smith followed with a layup on the ensuing offensive possession after a Seminole basket to make it 42-31 at the 12:08 mark.
The lead evaporated after a 14-2 FSU run. Booker and Jennings both picked up their fourth fouls during the run. Jennings stopped the bleeding temporarily with his first points with just over six to go. McDaniels pushed the lead to 48-45 on a pair from the line. Jennings had a follow slam to make it 50-47, but FSU answered on the other end. Booker followed with a dunk to make it 52-49.
McDaniels had a drive through the lane to make it a four-point lead at 54-50 with just over three remaining. Rod Hall took advantage of a Seminole miscue with 1:41 to go, converting a breakaway for a free throw to give the Tigers a three-point edge. The teams exchanged baskets inside the final minute, as Jordan Roper buried a two to make it 57-54, but Devon Bookert answered with a deep three to knot it with 30 seconds to go.
Seminole center Kiel Turpin had a game-high 16 points, all in the second half. Eight of his nine came at the free throw line, where Florida State converted 90 percent of its attempts.
The Tigers return home for a pair of games on Sunday and Tuesday. Clemson will face Virginia Tech on Sunday at 1:00 PM on alumni reunion weekend. The game will be part of a double-header with the women’s basketball team, who will face Maryland afterwards at 5:00.
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