No. 5 Florida State looks to rebound against Va. Tech
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No. 5 Florida State is coming off its first loss since Dec. 3 when it plays at Virginia Tech on Saturday in an Atlantic Coast Conference game.
The Seminoles (17-3, 7-2 ACC) lost 61-56 on Tuesday at reigning national champion Virginia at Charlottesville, Va.
"I would love to have gone undefeated for the remainder of the season, but we probably were not going to do that," Florida State coach Leonard Hamilton said. "I think what we'll have to do is evaluate and learn from the challenges that UVA gave us, and hopefully we can be better prepared for the next time we play them, and also prepared for the next game that we play."
Florida State had won 10 straight overall and eight consecutive ACC games after its season-opening loss to Pittsburgh on the road. The Seminoles had also won 15 straight games when leading at halftime.
Entering Saturday, Florida State is tied for second in the ACC with Duke behind 9-1 Louisville. The Cardinals' only conference loss came against the Seminoles.
The Seminoles will look to get back on track offensively at Virginia Tech. Devin Vassell was the only player who scored in double figures for Florida State against Virginia with 17 points. The Seminoles shot 38.9 percent from the field and 35 percent from 3-point range.
Florida State 7-foot-1 freshman center Balsa Koprivica was ejected for a flagrant-2 call with just more than seven minutes remaining in the game for a foul on guard Kihei Clark. Koprivica wrapped his arm around Clark as he was going for the block with Clark driving to the basket. Clark was thrown to the ground.
"When you've got it on video, and you've got three guys looking at it, I assume they got it right," Hamilton said.
Virginia Tech (14-7, 5-5) is looking to bounce back at home after consecutive losses at Boston College and Miami.
In the 71-61 loss Tuesday against the Hurricanes, Virginia Tech redshirt freshman guard Tyrece Radford played through early foul trouble and recorded a career-high 22 points while shooting 75 percent from the field. Radford led Virginia Tech in scoring for the first time this season. He also collected three steals.
"He's an amazing person and really an aggressive kid offensively and defensively," Virginia Tech coach Mike Young said. "I've never been opposed to playing kids with two fouls in the first half, but I am with him a little bit because he is so aggressive. He's a difference maker because of his energy and his effort plays and he's doing it rather consistently."
Young aims to build on Virginia Tech's defense after his team tied its season high in steals with 11 and forced Miami to commit 16 turnovers. Miami scored 44 points in the first half, however, which did not sit well with him.
"My team's been pretty darn good throughout defensively and you give up 44 points. ... They just drove us and came off dribble handoffs hot. Our connectivity was poor," Young said. "It was disappointing and they clearly outplayed us the first (20 minutes)."
--Field Level Media
Updated January 31, 2020