Monday, May 21, 2018
Sports

Michael Snaer, Seminoles beat Clemson

TALLAHASSEE — Go ahead and add Clemson to the list of teams victimized by the last-second heroics of Florida State's Michael Snaer.

With the score tied and eight seconds left Thursday night, the Seminoles gave Snaer the ball and let him do what he first did against Duke and then Virginia Tech.

The 6-foot-5 senior guard made a 3-pointer at the buzzer, lifting the Seminoles to a 60-57 victory in a game in which they didn't lead for nearly 30 minutes.

Clemson "did a good job of clogging the middle up and not giving us driving lanes," FSU coach Leonard Hamilton said. "Michael didn't have much of a choice."

Snaer finished with 11 points, Kiel Turpin scored a season-high 16 and Devon Bookert added 11 to complete FSU's regular-season sweep of Clemson.

Until their late run, the Seminoles (11-7, 3-2 ACC) seemed destined to duplicate their season-worst offensive performance in a 56-36 loss Saturday at Virginia.

They snapped out of their funk midway through the second half with an 8-0 run to tie the score at 44. Leading the way was Turpin, who entered the game averaging 3.6 points and had a season high of seven points against Buffalo on Nov. 12.

The 7-footer scored six during that run, going 4-of-4 from the free-throw line. "It was a confidence booster," Turpin said. "Guys just kept feeding me."

From there, Clemson (10-8, 2-4) held a narrow lead into the final seconds.

Jordan Roper shook free and made a 16-foot jumper with 55.9 seconds left, giving Clemson a 57-54 lead that quieted the crowd of nearly 7,900 at the Tucker Center.

Bookert responded after a subsequent timeout, hitting a 3-pointer that tied the score. FSU then forced a shot-clock violation to set the stage for Snaer's final shot.

Snaer brought the ball up the floor and looked at the clock. He said he only then realized he was running out of time to make a play. "In the game, things happen faster than you think," he said.

He sized up the defender, made his move to the right side and quickly elevated over the outstretched arms of two defenders.

"It felt good in body as soon as the ball left my hand," Snaer said. "Then my eyes got big. I was like, 'Did that really just happen again?' "

It was the Seminoles' first lead since 14-11 midway through the first half.

The Seminoles' offensive woes from Virginia continued through the first half.

Florida State went more than six minutes without a point near the end of the first half, when a 15-0 run gave Clemson a 29-16 lead. The scoreless streak ended when center Boris Bojanovsky converted a three-point play with 1:23 left.

"Our guys are not playing with a consistent level of confidence," Hamilton said. "But I think they're going to feel better about themselves after this one."

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