Tuesday, March 23, 2010
Florida State Wins in Overtime - On to the Sweet 16
By Aimee Sachs
Angel Gray covered her eyes as St. John's forward Da'Shena Stevens took the final shot at the buzzer in overtime.
Florida State's senior guard didn't want to see her career as a Seminole end at the Civic Center Monday night in the second round of the NCAA Tournament.
Stevens' shot did not fall, and the Seminoles hung on to win 66-65 on a night Florida State committed 21 turnovers.
"So many things were going through my head," said Gray, who had four points, three assists and two steals in her 34 minutes of action. "I know that this team is so much better than last year, and I would just hate to end it right here."
"It wasn't pretty at all, but we made it."
Gray, along with fellow seniors Jacinta Monroe and Alysha Harvin, were freshmen when the Seminoles advanced to the Sweet 16 for the first time in 2007. Now they will return for the second time in school history.
"What a great finish for three kids that have given their heart and soul to the program," FSU coach Sue Semrau said.
Harvin came up big for the Seminoles with a 13-point first half. She finished with 15 points, five rebounds, three assists and two steals.
"It's awesome," Harvin said after the game. Especially being a senior here with my teammates. It just feels wonderful."
But Gray doesn't believe the seniors carried the Seminoles on their backs on Monday, crediting sophomore Cierra Bravard and redshirt freshman Alexa Deluzio with making big plays.
"I just think everybody played a part," Gray said. "Cierra was huge for us. Just the fact that her body is so big and that we got her the ball and she finished. We've got to use our post more, apparently."
"We played our hearts out. I think we can do a lot better. I'm so proud of this team, and I'm ready to play another game."
Support the team
Florida State men's basketball coach Leonard Hamilton was one of many well-wishers looking to congratulate Sue Semrau outside of the Seminoles' locker room after the FSU women's basketball team'sovertime win.
Semrau was embraced by Hamilton, former player Gainiyat Adedutan and Angel Gray's mother - who lifted her up off the ground - among many others.
"I just came out of a war," Semrau said.
It was a game where Semrau's third-seeded team battled and battled sixth-seeded St. John's, making every second count down the stretch as a nervous Civic Center crowd hung on their every move. The 2,510 in attendance went silent in times Florida State trailed down the stretch, but erupted with every Seminole basket.
There was never any breathing room. With 19 lead exchanges and 19 ties, no lead was ever safe — and Semrau and the Seminoles knew it.
The Seminoles, who kept their composure throughout the game despite all the turnovers and missed rebounds, finally let it all out in the locker room. From the hallway, their elation was heard in the form of shrieks of joy. When Hamilton finally found Semrau, they hugged before he entered the locker room to congratulate the team.
"I don't even know where I am right now," Angel Gray said.