It was a somber evening for the Seminoles when their late-game comeback was stifled by South Carolina. Last night in Stockton, California the No. 1 seeded Gamecocks defeated No. 3 Florida State 71 – 64 en route to the Final Four. After a notable season out of Tallahassee for FSU with a 28 – 7 record, their year comes to an end. For South Carolina, they’ll join their male counterparts in the coveted Final Four in Dallas. It’s only the 14th time that a school has the men’s and women’s team in the Final Four.
South Carolina Hampers Seminole Rally for the Win
With about five minutes to go left in the third quarter, the Seminoles trailed by 16 points. But the team rallied late in the fourth. Three different FSU players made consecutive baskets with less than five minutes to go to cut South Carolina’s lead down to three. With the game on the line, Gamecock’s junior guard Kaela Davis delivered an and-one to put the Seminoles away.
Davis’ clutch play down the stretch was merely a punctuation mark after a magnificent performance from the entire night. The former Georgia Tech guard logged 35 minutes, tallied a game-high 23 points, and snagged five rebounds. She made her time count with a 10 for 15 shooting performance.
Davis, who transferred from Georgia Tech prior to the start of the season, sought another school for the opportunity to one day cut the net down. Last night, with her dreams out in front of her, the junior guard closed the game out in cold blood.
Supported with a pair of 16-point performances from her starting lineup mates, guard Tyasha Harris and A’ja Wilson, South Carolina was able to finish a resilient Seminoles team. Harris and Wilson collectively added 10 boards for their side.
Final Four Alludes Seminoles Yet Again
A 36.6 shooting percentage from the floor and a 13.3 percentage from beyond the arc is generally a precursor of defeat. Despite the inaccuracy from Florida State’s side, the Gamecocks conceded 18 turnovers that kept the score within reach. Leticia Romero contributed 16 points, 6 rebounds and 6 assists, and center Chatrice White added 15 points off of the bench. Romero played the entire game, but her and her team’s efforts weren’t enough to overcome the Gamecock attack.
Last night’s game was reminiscent of 2015 when Florida State failed to reach the Final Four from the Elite Eight. Two years ago the Gamecocks hosed the Seminoles’ post-season dreams, and yesterday evening was no different. When discussing their inability to defeat South Carolina, FSU head coach Sue Semrau said pressure was certainly a factor. While reaching the Elite Eight was definitely a step up from last year’s tournament run where the Seminoles only reached the Sweet Sixteen, there is certainly a desire for more for Semrau and her players. Unfortunately, it won’t come this year as Semrau and her team go home while the Gamecocks continue their run.