by Rob Clough
Duke 73, FSU 61. 1/8/01. Leon County Civic Center.
Duke notched their first ACC road victory by beating the improved FSU
Seminoles after a very worrisome first half. The 'noles had only lost
twice all year, once to top-25 Florida and a bad loss to Chattanooga. But
Brooke Wyckoff has established herself as a great scorer in addition to
being a fine rebounder and shotblocker. And with the maturity of big,
talented post players like Levys Torres and Katelyn Vujas, along with the
newfound scoring freedom of April Traylor, this was not going to be an
FSU went up 11-2 three minutes into the game, thanks to tight defense
and some Alana Beard misses. But 7 points from Rochelle Parent and a
Schweitzer three calmed the young Devils down as they closed to within 1.
But FSU continued to play hard, claiming a 21-14 lead with about eight
minutes left in the half. Schweitzer scored 6 points down the stretch,
while LaNedra Brown came off the bench to score a couple of baskets late
in the half. FSU had their chances to take control, but couldn't sink any
The second half was the Iciss Tillis show, as she hit back to back threes
that turned a 1 point deficit into a 5 point lead. Beard also came out
strong after a 1-7 first half that Coach G called her worst of the year.
She scored 9 points early in the half to match Tillis' early 13 point outburst.
The closest FSU came to coming back was cutting the score to 7 with about
five minutes left, but Beard hit a three to put the game away.
Duke hasn't played well against FSU on the road in recent years, but had
played well enough to win. FSU has already beaten Georgia Tech and NC State,
and they are officially a team to watch out for in the ACC. But Tillis proved
her mettle by doing a good job on Torres, as well as helping on Vujas. For
her efforts here and against Wake Forest she was named
ACC Rookie of the Week.
Don't forget to check out her
chat session on espn.com where she says all sorts of interesting things.
She tells us why she chose Duke and what she thinks of dunking.
It was very heartening to see Parent score a career-high 12 points, as
she's vowed lately to improve her scoring output. Her herky-jerky style and
ability to drive make her a difficult player to stop in the open floor when
she actually decides to try to score. Check out a profile of her
here. Then go read a chat session with this very
private person here. Between Ro's chat session and
Georgia's latest diary entry, one can get a real sense of
these two cerebral and witty young women. I especially liked the bit where
Georgia notes that the team ridiculed Alana Beard for crying at the end of
"What Women Want" and had to tell us that her teams won when she was playing
with Dr. Henry Friedman's family.
A couple of more notes: Krista Gingrich tore another calf muscle and so
is out for at least three more weeks. This is a real blow to her because
she was just rounding into form physically. The team will miss her veteran
presence. Nedra played well and got a couple of crucial baskets against FSU.
Could she finally be rounding a corner as far as playing time goes? Beyond
Tillis, Duke has no consistent answers inside and Nedra could be a piece of
Lastly, a few ACC notes. The league is very tight, with Virginia at 4-1
holding a half game lead over 3-1 Duke and FSU. (Update 1/15: Clemson just
beat Virginia pretty soundly, so Duke is now at 4-1 and leading the league
by a half game. FSU lost to Wake to fall to 3-2). Clemson is right behind
at 3-2, and NCSU, Ga Tech and UNC are all 2-3. Every team in the league
has a winning record overall, and 7 teams have already reached double digits
in overall wins. The league's leading scorer and rebounder is UNC's
LaQuanda Barksdale, averaging 19 and 11. Beard is 6th at 16 ppg and
Schweitzer 14th at 13.4. Georgia is also second in FG%, 3FG%, and threes
per game, while also coming in 5th in assists. Beard is 6th in assists,
first in steals, ninth in blocks, 4th in FG%, and 5th in FT%. Sheana Mosch
leads the ACC in FT% with 84% while Iciss Tillis is 3rd in blocks with 1.38
per game. Duke leads the league in scoring margin (+17), FG%, FG% defense,
assists, blocks and steals.