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FSU Seminoles beat No. 19 Georgia Tech for the fifth straight time

FSU’s 7-foot-1 Solomon Alabi, taking a second-half shot, made 6 of 6 free throws, including the two that put the Seminoles ahead to stay. The rest of the team was 10-of-21 from the line.

Associated Press

FSU’s 7-foot-1 Solomon Alabi, taking a second-half shot, made 6 of 6 free throws, including the two that put the Seminoles ahead to stay. The rest of the team was 10-of-21 from the line.

TALLAHASSEE — Solomon Alabi wasn't a bit worried as he stepped to the free-throw line, his team trailing by a point with 22 seconds left.

Alabi, who may be the best 7-foot-1 free-throw shooter around, made both, though the first bounced high off the rim. The second gave the Seminoles the lead over 19th-ranked Georgia Tech, which failed to score again.

"There's no one we'd rather have up there," coach Leonard Hamilton said after a 68-66 win, the Seminoles' fifth straight over the Yellow Jackets. "He's got ice water in his veins."

Alabi, a redshirt sophomore who has made 83 percent (68-of-82) of his free throws this season, said he was confident largely because of a dedicated practice routine.

"I've done this so many times in practice," said Alabi, who often will shoot 100 free throws in a session and made 50 of 54 in one particular hot stretch. "I tune everything else out."

Alabi finished with 14 points, going 6 of 6 from the line. FSU (15-4, 3-2 ACC) otherwise made just 10 of 21 free throws.

Georgia Tech (14-5, 3-3) got its last lead on Iman Shumpert's jump shot with 1:27 left.

After Alabi's free throws, Brian Oliver missed a 3-pointer and Gani Lawal and Shumpert missed opportunities to tie for Georgia Tech. Jordan DeMercy added a free throw in the closing seconds for the final margin.

"We were really impatient offensively," said Georgia Tech coach Paul Hewitt, who has one of the youngest teams in the country with two freshmen and two sophomores starting.

Chris Singleton's career-high 23 points led FSU.

"I was just trying to get the offense going," said Singleton, who rebounded from a two-point game, his worst of the season, in last week's 63-58 win over Virginia Tech. "The coaches keep telling me to look for my shot."

Lawal, Georgia Tech's leading scorer, was held to a single field goal by the Seminoles for the second time this season.

"It's like a barroom brawl inside," Hamilton said. "Very aggressive."

Hewitt noted Alabi's presence inside as a factor.

"I'm not sure anybody in the country has a guy like him," he said.

Oliver, another Tech freshman, came off the bench and hit six 3-pointers and had a career-best 20 points. Derrick Favors had 10 points and 10 rebounds.

Alabi and Singleton each had seven rebounds for the Seminoles, who had a 39-37 edge.

Besides 20 lead changes, there were 10 ties.

"I don't think any loss or win in the ACC is an upset," Hamilton said. "It's going to be interesting to see how things pan out."

FSU 68

No. 19 Ga. Tech 66

FSU Seminoles beat No. 19 Georgia Tech for the fifth straight time 01/24/10 [Last modified: Sunday, January 24, 2010 9:40pm]
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