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FSU men’s basketball falls to scorching Wake Forest in Baba Miller’s debut

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Bubba Miller had plenty of chances.

But Florida State (5-12, 3-3 ACC) ultimately failed to bring a vaunted freshman win in their much-anticipated debut, beating Wake Forest (12-5) in a 90-75 manner on Wednesday. , 4-2). .

After receiving a 16-game suspension for violating NCAA rules, Miller played the first game of his career with the Seminoles and quickly cracked the rotation. He appeared in his 17 minutes off the bench, scoring 4 points on 2-for-4 shooting, 4 rebounds and 1 block.

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The Demon Deacons dominated Miller and the Seminoles on perimeter shots to finish 14 of 26 (53.8%) from 3-point range and 30 of 54 (55.6%) overall. FSU posted 17 turnovers as he went from the floor 29 of 54 (53.7%) and over the arc 8 of 21 (38.1%).

“Wake has a very mature team,” Seminole manager Leonard Hamilton said at the post-game press conference. When there are a lot of men who are a little older and seem a little more mature, it’s clear that they’ve absorbed things and have a much better ability to execute.

“College basketball has changed a lot lately. We’re not there yet. We’re doing some things pretty well. But we’re not doing enough against experienced teams.”

Here are three points about this game.

Bubba Miller shaking off the rust

A 6-foot-11-inch, 204-pound power forward, Miller is recognized as a solid 3-point shooter.

However, Miller opened the match with a decidedly nervous start, scoring the first shot on a 3-point attempt from the right flank.

It’s understandable that Miller had to shake off the rust after missing so much time. Miller continues to score chances in the second half of the season and needs to improve and build confidence.

What stood out was that FSU coach Leonard Hamilton seemed to show confidence in Miller throughout the game. He received his sixth-most minutes among his Seminole players and certainly had his moments late in the game.

“I have no doubt he will be an outstanding player for us,” said Hamilton. he’s an air ball he’s not a jump shooter For the first two minutes he was there, he was gassed.

“When we got him out for the second time, the excitement and adrenaline was a big adjustment for an 18-year-old who came from all over the country to play against a very good basketball team.

“So we’re going to give him time to develop.”

Devil’s Deacon was scorching hot

Wake Forest scored 90 with just 7 points off the bench.

The Demon Deacons’ four starters – guard Cameron Hildreth (23), Andrew Carr (22), Tyree Appleby (16) and forward Damari Monsanto (22) – scored in double figures and combined 12 out of 21 (57.1%). ) across the arc.

FSU seems to have given Wake Forest a lot of open looks. Monsanto made the most of them on the perimeter, shooting 6 of 7 from 3-point range. Appleby created many chances with his eight assists.

The Demon Deacons hadn’t scored 81 or better against a Power Five team all season.

“They went into the paint many times, broke the defense and then scored a 3-kick. The sight percentage from the floor was very high and they were good 3-pointers,” said Hamilton. . team anyway.

“So you can’t hold back the dribble and they’re lined up for the kickout shot – they executed a perfect approach. You have to give them credit for that.”

Matthew Cleveland records another double-double

Cleveland maintained its winning streak.

The sophomore guard had six consecutive double-doubles, totaled 19 points on 8-of-13 shooting, and secured 12 rebounds. No FSU player has recorded his sixth consecutive double-double since his Greg Grady in the 1974-75 season.

In his last 10 games, Cleveland is on a very hot streak. He’s averaging 17.6 points and 9.9 rebounds in that stretch, shooting 50.4% (66 of 131) from the floor and 50% (9 of 18) from beyond the arc.

Guard Caleb Mills scored Cleveland and a team with 19 points, making 6-of-9 from the floor, 3-of-4 from 3-point range and 4-of-4 from the free-throw line. UCF Transfers his guard Darrin Green Jr. also reached his double figures in scoring, shooting 5 of 12 points from the floor and 2 of 6 points over the arc.

Hamilton said: His one thing about ACC is that there is no time to be happy or sad.

“There’s another game around the corner. We have Virginia on Saturday so I’ll report back. Hopefully we can win some games at home and steal some away.”

next

FSU’s next host will be No. 13 Virginia (12-3, 4-2) at the Donald L. Tucker Civic Center on Saturday at 4pm (TV: ESPN2).

The Cavaliers narrowly defeated the Seminoles on December 3, 62-57.

Contact Carter Karels at ckarels@gannett.com or follow him on Twitter @CarterKarels. You can also follow our articles on Facebook (NoleSports) and his Instagram (tlhnolesports).

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