Thursday, April 17th, 2014

Singleton Simply Spectacular

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If you missed Sunday’s Florida State 97-73 win over UNC Greensboro, you missed history.

Chris Singleton, the defending ACC Defensive Player of the Year and who is attempting to become only the second ACC player to repeat that accolade, had a game for the Florida State record books.

Singleton recorded the third ever triple double in 64 years of FSU basketball by scoring 22 points, grabbing 11 rebounds, to go along with 10 steals.

The steals set a new record breaking Bob Sura’s record of nine thefts in one game.

Showing why he is considered one of the very top defenders if not the best in the country, Singleton took over the game immediately by scoring 10 points and collected two of his steals in the first four minutes of the game.

Leonard Hamilton simply said after the game about Singleton’s performance, “Chris was very focused.”

“He brought a lot of energy that the rest of the team fed off of. Defense means a lot to him.”

Defense apparently meant a lot to the whole team in this game.

Not exactly thrilled with the defensive effort in Friday’s game despite the statistics, FSU held UNCG to 38.6% from the floor. Although that statistic was higher than the prior game, Hamilton was happier with this effort.

“In one on one situations against their guards our defense was better”, Hamilton said. “Our big men rotated better.”

But not only was the defense better, the offense was sharper as well.
Helped by numerous run outs leading to 32 points off 26 Spartan turnovers, the Seminoles relentlessly attacked the rim scoring 42 points in the paint and 17 second chance points.

For the game, FSU shot 51.5% from the floor helped by 7 of 14 shooting by Singleton and a quiet relatively speaking compared to Singleton 7 of 9 by Michael Snaer (16 points) and 6 of 10 by Okaro White (also 16 points).

Derwin Kitchen added 11 points.

The ‘Noles were an excellent 20-25 from the free throw line and a more than respectable 7-18 from behind the arc.

UNCG put three players in double figures led by David Williams’ 16 points.

A sore spot for the Seminoles was the 46% the Spartans shot in the second half some of which having to do with a lack of intensity when the game was clearly out of reach, a floor full of walk ons in the last ninety seconds, but also the plentiful second chances UNCG got from 17 offensive rebounds, probably the most troubling aspect for the Seminoles to work on.

FSU led from start to finish leading 46-27 at the break behind Singleton’s 13 first half points and Snaer’s 9 points.

It was the Michael Snaer show in the early minutes of the second half as the sophomore guard scored seven points with two buckets coming as a result of two Singleton thefts.

The ‘Noles led by as many as 32 points, 87-55, with 5:27 remaining.

Singleton’s record setting steal came in spectacular fashion with three minutes left in the game. Darting in front of a pass to the right wing, Singleton took off to the Seminole basket and instead of attempting the contested layup, he tossed a no look pass over his shoulder to Kitchen who laid in the ball plus was fouled on the play.

While overall pleased, Hamilton stressed his team is still in developmental mode.

“We are still finding our stoppers and finishers. I like our parts but we are still developing roles.”

The ‘Noles will continue a grueling schedule as they will play their third game as part of four games in seven days. FSU will host Gardner-Webb on Tuesday with tip off at 7:00 PM. It will be shown on TV on Fox Sports – Florida.

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