As Florida State prepares to host Virginia Tech on Saturday afternoon in Tallahassee, Fla., both teams would like to put the sour feeling from their most recent losses in the rear-view mirror.
The Seminoles (13-6, 6-3 Atlantic Coast Conference) relinquished their share of the top spot in the ACC following a disappointing performance in a 75-61 loss to Georgia Tech on Wednesday. The Yellow Jackets entered the game in last place in the conference and yet managed to snap Florida State's six-game winning streak with a season-high 13 steals.
Meanwhile, the Hokies (10-10, 2-7) suffered another narrow defeat in gut-wrenching fashion against Miami, 78-75, on Wednesday. Miami guard Charlie Moore's half-court shot at the buzzer sent Virginia Tech to its third consecutive loss and its fourth conference defeat by five points or fewer.
Justyn Mutts scored to give the Hokies a 75-70 lead with 2:24 left in the second half. But Virginia Tech failed to score the rest of the way, missing its final three shots as Miami closed the game on an 8-0 run.
"We've got a really good basketball team. We have deserved better outcomes. But that's the game, man. Doesn't owe you a damn thing. You've got to suck it up and play better,'" Virginia Tech coach Mike Young said after the loss.
Against Georgia Tech, Florida State committed 10 of its 12 first-half turnovers over the final 8:34 of the first half, which allowed the Yellow Jackets to go on an 18-2 run and take a 14-point lead just before halftime.
Anthony Polite had 11 points and Naheem McLeod had 10 points and seven rebounds. But the Seminoles equaled a season-high with 17 turnovers, which allowed Georgia Tech to finish with four players in double figures.
Florida State, which was coming off victories against conference-leading Miami and Duke -- the ACC's lone ranked team -- took a loss that Seminoles coach Leonard Hamilton realized could be damaging to their NCAA Tournament resume.
"So that means we've got to figure out a way to make up for this with hopefully getting another run of games being successful," Hamilton said.
Caleb Mills leads Florida State in scoring this season with 13.4 points per game. Keve Aluma powers the Hokies, averaging 15.8 points, 6.6 rebounds and 2.1 assists per game.
--Field Level Media