In a game that looked like the best versions of each school’s football teams playing goal-line defense, the Seminoles (23-12) just could not quite close at the end as they so often have in recent weeks.
A two-bucket sequence highlighted a 12-4 run by the Seminoles as they pulled away from No. 4 seed Gonzaga for a 75-60 win in the Sweet 16 Thursday evening at Staples Center.
With No. 1 Virginia, No. 2 Cincinnati, No. 3 Tennessee and No. 4 Arizona all knocked out during the first weekend of play, it felt like the carpet was laid out for Big Blue to make it to the Final Four.
Coach Sue Semrau’s third-seeded Seminoles never found their offensive rhythm against the savvy, gritty Bulls, who are moving on as the No. 11 seed following an 86-65 victory at the Donald L. Tucker Center.
As soon as C.J. Walker made his first of two free throws, the one that effectively sealed Florida State’s win over Xavier here late Sunday night, Terance Mann and P.J. Savoy exchanged a knowing smile near midcourt. They knew it, same as everyone else packed into Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena: The Seminoles are going to the Sweet 16.
Florida State polished off 14th seed Little Rock 91-49, extending its streak of consecutive NCAA first-round victories to 15, dating back to 1991.
Mfiondu Kabengele scored 14 points, and Florida State beat No. 8 seed Missouri 67-54 on Friday night in the West Region.
The University of Maryland-Baltimore County stunned the sports world by pulling off the most shocking upset in college basketball history, hammering Virginia 74-54 on Friday night to become the first No. 16 seed ever to beat a No. 1 seed in the men's NCAA Tournament.