Miami can’t hold on to lead, fall 83-79 to No. 9 FSU in overtime

Chris Lykes led Miami in scoring with 24 points. Photo credit: Josh Halper
Chris Lykes led Miami in scoring with 24 points. Photo credit: Josh Halper

After 40 minutes of hard-fought basketball, Miami and Florida State ended regulation tied 69-69.

But five minutes of overtime was the deciding factor, and Miami (10-7, 2-5) failed to pull through.

“I told them that we did everything right to win the game except win,” Miami head coach Jim Larrañaga said after the game.

Down 76-71 with 1:27 left in overtime, Chris Lykes made back-to-back 3-pointers to pull the game within two points, but a dunk from FSU guard Trent Forrest with 13 seconds remaining put the game out of reach for the Canes. Florida State outscored Miami 14-10 in the overtime period.

With a nine-point lead with five minutes remaining in the second half, it looked as though Miami was going to pull out a win. But in those last five minutes, Florida State forced Miami into committing four turnovers that the Seminoles converted into points.

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Florida State scored 21 points off Miami's 24 turnovers. Photo credit: Josh Halper

“We turned the ball over and they scored off those turnovers,” Lykes said. “Basketball is a game of runs and they made a run at the right time and we didn’t execute offensively or defensively.”

FSU guard MJ Walker hit a 3-pointer with three minutes left and seconds later guard Anthony Polite made a dunk on a fastbreak off a steal. With two minutes remaining, Walker made another 3-pointer after a steal from Malik Osborn.

Walker was held scoreless in the first half, but his 19 point second half performance was instrumental in Florida State’s late game run.

“I thought both teams played terrific defense throughout the game,” Larrañaga said. “We had some turnovers that led to baskets and those turnovers allowed them to cut the lead.”

“At the end of the day we were just playing too fast and we turned the ball over,” senior guard DJ Vasiljevic said.

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Kameron McGusty scored 15 points and six assists in the loss. Photo credit: Josh Halper

Statistically, Miami shot better than Florida State and out-rebounded them 41-36. The Hurricanes finished the game shooting 46.8 percent from field goal range, while the Seminoles shot 42 percent.

But the most glaring stat was the 24 turnovers that Miami committed. FSU scored 21 points off turnovers and had 15 total steals.

“We rely a lot on our ability to get deflections and steals and they did a very good job of maintaining their poise throughout most of the game,” Florida State head coach Leonard Hamilton said.

Despite being under-sized compared to the players guarding him, Lykes led Miami in scoring with 24 points, including six made 3-pointers. But the 5’8 guard also committed a costly six turnovers, no doubt in part to the tough FSU defense that trapped at every possible chance.

“Would have liked to come away with a win but at the end of the day we fought hard,” Lykes said.

Lykes, Vasiljevic and forward Sam Waardenburg all played more than 40 minutes in the three periods. Vasiljevic had 19 points, 14 of which came in the second half, but was held scoreless in overtime.

Miami will continue its tough ACC schedule with a trip to Durham, North Carolina on Tuesday to face Duke for the second time, before heading to Chapel Hill to take on the Tar Heels.