TALLAHASSEE, FLA. The Coastal Carolina men's basketball squad battled for 40 minutes but came up short in a 78-65 loss at Florida State, Dec. 21. With the loss, the Chanticleers fell to 4-6 on the season, while the Seminoles, who are receiving votes in both major national polls, advance to 10-2.
Coastal got on the board first on a jumper by junior guard Jack Leasure (Rochester, N.Y./McQuaid Jesuit) and led 4-2 in the early going. The Chanticleers continued to battle throughout the half, though going through a scoring droubt of around three minutes twice in the period. They still managed to keep the lead under double figures for most of the half until two buckets in the fijnal minute of play gave FSU a 43-31 halftime advantage.
CCU hit on 50 percent (14-of-28) shots in the first half and stayed close on the boards, as FSU led 18-15. The two areas of difference were turnovers, as Coastal had given up 11, as compared to five for the Seminoles, for nine FSU points and the charity stripe, where Florida State went to the line 12 times, converting nine, as compared to just one for Coastal. That margin was attributed to the fact that 10 fouls were called on CCU before a single Florida State foul was called, with the half ending on a 11-2 foul count.
FSU opened the second half on a 13-5 run to push its advantage to 54-36 with 15:33 remaining in the contest. However, Coastal showed signs of growth by battling back throughout the half and cutting the lead down to just six at 69-63 on freshman Joshua Mack's (Hopkinsville, Ky./University Heights) three-pointer from 28 feet out with 3:35 remaining in the game. The host Seminoles got a couple of breaks and the next nine points to put the game out of reach.
Coastal shot 45.6 percent (26-for-57) for the game while FSU shot 50.9 percent (29-for-57) for the game. The Chants did knock down nine three-pointers, but the Seminoles were 16-for-21 at the free throw line for the game, compared to CCU's 4-for-7. Florida State outrebounded CCU 32-28 for the game.
Leasure led the Chanticleers with 17 points, while Mack and senior forward Moses Sonko (E. Greenwich, R.I./Classical) each had 14. Sonko made it a double-double with a game-high 13 rebounds. Florida State was paced by Al Thornton with 21, while Toney Douglas had 17.
Coastal returns from the holidays with a home game Fri., Dec. 29 at 7 p.m., as the Chants host St. Andrews Presbyterian College.