Coming off a devastating loss in Chapel Hill on Jan. 26 to North Carolina, the Clemson basketball team spent the week preparing to travel to Florida State on Saturday. The 80-61 loss brought the number of losses at Chapel Hill’s Dean Smith Center up to 57.
After losing to the Seminoles in Clemson earlier this season, the Tigers were looking for redemption. And with their third ACC road win of the season, Clemson surpassed their win total from the 2012-2013 season and made this only the ninth time in 61 seasons that Clemson has won three or more ACC road games.. With one of the worst offenses in the country, last season’s team only won 13 games. The win over Florida State was the 14th win this season. This brings their overall record to 14-6 and their ACC record to 5-3.
When Clemson visited Tallahassee last season, they led by double digits at one point, but let the lead slip away and lost when the Seminoles broke the 57-57 tie with a three-pointer at the buzzer.
To nobody’s surprise, K.J. McDaniels led the team in almost every statistic out there. He is believed to be the only player in the country leading his team not only in scoring, but also rebounds, blocks, steals, and three-pointers.
Scoring 26 points, he was only one short of his career high of 27 points that came at Arkansas earlier this season. This game marks the 18th out of 20 games this season that McDaniels has scored at least 20 points. McDaniels had three blocked shots, including one after committing a turnover in the final minute of the game, which brings him to 53 blocked shots this season. He also finished the game with seven rebounds and three assists during his 37 minutes of play. Jaron Blossomgame scored 10 points at 56.5% in the second half of the game.
Going into halftime, Clemson trailed 20-17 and already had 11 turnovers. However, for the third time this season, the Tigers overcame a halftime deficit to come back and win the game. The Tigers broke Florida State’s five game winning streak with the 53-49 win. When holding their opponent to 50 points or less, the Tigers are now 7-0. During the second half, Clemson led by ten, the largest lead during the game and they outscored the Seminoles by 7 in the second half.
During the game, sophomore guard Jordan Roper made multiple three-pointers. Clemson is 4-0 this season when he makes multiple in the same game. The Tigers also have a top-10 NCAA three-point percentage defense this season.
Clemson will return home for their first game since the Jan. 18 win against Wake Forest. On Tuesday, the Tigers will face Georgia Tech in Littlejohn.