Southeast women suffer first loss at Florida State, fall 62-31

Wednesday, November 26, 2008
ELLIOTT MCCASKILL ~ Special to the Southeast Missourian
Florida State's Kayli Keough tries to get off a shot while guarded by Southeast's Rachel Blunt (32) and Szandra Pal during Tuesday's game in Tallahassee, Fla.

Florida State dropped out of the women's basketball national rankings following Sunday's upset loss to rival Florida.

The Seminoles took out their frustrations on Southeast Missouri State.

After much of Tuesday's first half was competitive, the Seminoles had their way with the Redhawks and romped 62-31 in Tallahassee, Fla.

FSU, which was ranked 21st before losing to Florida, improved to 4-1. The Seminoles have earned four straight NCAA tournament berths out of the powerful Atlantic Coast Conference.

Southeast, which had posted three consecutive home victories to begin the season, fell to 3-1.

"We caught them at the worst possible time, after they just lost to Florida," Southeast coach John Ishee said. "They're a really good team. They've been to four straight NCAA tournaments and advanced [to the second round] all four years."

Ishee, in his third season at Southeast, rated FSU the most talented team the Redhawks have faced during his tenure.

That includes Baylor last year and Oklahoma in the NCAA tournament two seasons ago.

"Their talent level is really good," said Ishee, whose squad lost to FSU 64-50 at the Show Me Center two years ago in the only other meeting between the programs.

The Redhawks got off to a slow start Tuesday, missing their first eight shots, but pulled into a 13-13 tie on sophomore wing Lauren Sharpe's 3-pointer with 7 minutes, 49 seconds left in the opening half.

After that, however, it was all FSU. The Seminoles scored the next 14 points and led 27-15 at halftime as Southeast went scoreless for more than seven minutes.

The second half was no contest. FSU scored the first nine points for an overall 23-2 run to go up 36-15 and the rout was on.

Southeast's 31-point output was the seventh lowest in program history and the lowest since the 1976-77 team scored 30 points in a game.

"We competed pretty good, but we just weren't in sync enough to win on the road against a really good basketball team like Florida State," Ishee said.

Ishee was not pleased with the play of his large senior class that includes four starters. The exception was forward Crysta Glenn.

"I was disappointed in our group of seniors, other than Crysta Glenn," Ishee said. "I didn't think we played as smart as we're capable of playing.

"They competed, but overall I just didn't think our seniors stepped up and played the way they need to play to compete with the likes of Florida State."

Glenn continued her strong early-season play for the Redhawks, scoring 15 points, grabbing six rebounds and recording a career-high six steals.

Glenn is averaging 15.5 points and 9.3 rebounds while shooting 90.6 percent from the free-throw line (29 of 32).

"Crysta played her fanny off," Ishee said.

Sharpe added nine points, but no other Southeast player scored more than three points as the rest of the squad combined for seven points.

"Lauren played well and so did Bianca Beck," Ishee said.

Beck, a freshman point guard, had no turnovers in 26 minutes off the bench.

Southeast struggled with its shooting against the much taller Seminoles, hitting 16.9 percent from the field overall (10 of 59) and 12.5 percent from 3-point range (3 of 24).

"You've got to make shots," Ishee said. "If you don't make shots against a really good team on the road you won't have a chance."

FSU's two 6-foot-4 players dominated the action inside, scoring at will from around the basket.

Junior forward Jacinta Monroe scored 18 points and freshman center Cierra Bravard added 13 points. They combined to hit 15 of 22 field-goal attempts.

The Seminoles shot 52.2 percent (24 of 46), owned a 36-6 points-in-the-paint advantage and outrebounded Southeast 45-30.

"We were just outsized and outquicked at every spot," Ishee said.

Southeast continues a stretch that has it playing seven of its first eight games at home when Missouri Valley Conference member Indiana State visits the Show Me Center Friday night.

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