#5 Virginia Upsets #4 Florida State, 71-67 in OT at ACC Tourney Quarterfinal

VIRGINIASPORTSDOTCOM Junior Tiffany Sardin
VIRGINIASPORTSDOTCOM
Junior Tiffany Sardin
VIRGINIASPORTSDOTCOM

March 5, 2005

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GREENSBORO, N.C.- - Freshman Sharnee Zoll (Marlboro, N.J.) went a perfect 6-for-6 at the free throw in line during the last 30 seconds of overtime to give No. 5 seed Virginia a 71-67 upset win over No. 4 seed Florida State in the quarterfinal round at the ACC Women's Basketball Tournament on Saturday.

"I knew I had to knock them down," Zoll said. "I knew my team had confidence in me, so I just had to hit them so we could win."

Virginia now advances to Sunday's ACC semifinal against No. 1 seed North Carolina, who beat No. 9 seed Miami, 64-57 earlier in the day. Virginia and UNC tip off at 1 p.m. at the Greensboro Coliseum. Fox Sports Net will televise the game live nationally.

This is Virginia's 20th trip to the ACC semifinal. The Cavaliers have advanced to the tourney's championship game six times, winning the ACC title three times (1990, 1992, 1993).

"Today's game was a battle from start to finish," UVa head coach Debbie Ryan. "I was obviously concerned coming in with LaTonya Blue (Baltimore, Md.) and Siedah Williams (Cleveland, Ohio) not being able to play because of injury, but I had a lot of confidence in my team."

UVa improved to 20-9 overall, while the Seminoles fell to 23-7 overall. With the win UVa recorded its 20th win, becoming the first Cavalier team to reach the milestone since the 2000 season. It also marked the 19th season in head coach Debbie Ryan's 28-year career that UVa has won 20 games in a season.

"I thought Virginia did a tremendous job of filling in the hole that LaTonya Blue left," FSU head coach Sue Semrau, the 2005 ACC Coach of the Year, said. "She has been the glue for them all year, and I thought their team came out with a lot of fight and did a nice job."

 

 

In the first half, Virginia jumped out to a quick lead, 9-5, before FSU used a 19-11 run to go ahead by eight, 28-20. The Seminoles held a five-point edge at halftime, 36-31.

In the second half, UVa opened the stanza with a 7-2 run to tie the game at 38-38 on a free throw by senior Brandi Teamer (Joliet, Ill.). The Cavaliers then went on a 14-4 run to lead by 10 points, 54-44 with 4:31 to go in regulation. FSU closed out the half with a 12-2 run of its own to tie the game at 56-56 and force overtime.

In overtime, FSU went ahead by three, 59-56, on a lay-up and free throw by Alicia Gladden. Zoll hit a jumper to put UVa ahead for good. The freshman point guard then sealed the win with her six straight free throws.

Four Cavaliers netted double-figure scoring, led by Teamer's 23 points, one shy of her season high. Junior Tiffany Sardin (Chicago, Ill.), who started for Blue, finished with a career-high 18 points and career-high nine rebounds. She was named the Aeropostale ACC Player of the Game. Senior Jocelyn Logan-Friend (Cheverly, Md.) added 12 points, and Zoll had 10 points.

"I told Brandi Teamer before today, that this was a game that she would have to step up in and really give us a good solid performance, and she went well beyond," Ryan said.

Virginia played without starting All-ACC guard Blue (ankle) and sophomore reserve Siedah Williams (knee), who were nursing injuries suffered earlier this week in practice. Both are listed as day-to-day.

"I feel I owe it to LaTonya," Teamer said of her stepped up play, "because there was a time last year when I wasn't able to play, and she would pick up the slack for the team. I felt it was only right for me to pick up the slack. Tiffany and I did that today, and the rest of the team followed our lead."

Roneeka Hodges led the Seminoles with 26 points, while Gladden finished with a double-double of 20 points and 14 rebounds.

Overall, Florida State out-rebounded Virginia, 45-38.

ACC WOMEN'S BASKETBALL TOURAMENT

                    		  1	2	OT	-	Final
#5 seed Virginia (20-9)		31	25	15	-	71
#4 seed Florida State (23-7)	36	20	11	-	67