Florida State had the depth and made the clutch plays, yet again, to pull off an overtime win.
RaiQuan Gray had career-highs in points (24) and rebounds (12) as No. 17 Florida State defeated Wake Forest 92-85 in overtime on Saturday.
Gray made 10 of 10 free-throw attempts and scored the Seminoles’ first four points in overtime. The redshirt junior forward scored in double figures for the sixth straight game and had his second double-double in a month for the Seminoles (11-3, 7-2 ACC), who were playing their first game in two weeks due to COVID protocol.
Playing without starting center Balsa Koprivica, the 6-foot-8 Gray was often the Seminoles’ tallest player on the court and did a little bit of everything — even adding four assists and three steals.
“He got some tough rebounds,” FSU coach Leonard Hamilton said. “He was our big guy. He stepped up tonight and gave us a major contribution.”
Said Barnes of Gray: “The tear that he’s been on, rebounds, defensive effort, blocks, steals, getting in passing lanes. He’s been a leader on this team.”
The Seminoles tied it up at 80 with under a second to go in regulation when Scottie Barnes drove the length of the floor and made a reverse layup.
“He’s built for moments like that,” said Gray, who showed up postgame on Zoom wearing a No. 24 Spurs jersey of former Nole Devin Vassell.
That set up Florida State in the extra period, where the Seminoles have now tied a national record by winning 11 straight overtime games. The Seminoles matched the totals by Louisville (1968-75), UMass (1991-96) and Virginia (1991-96).
Jonah Antonio scored a career-high 23 points, drilling 7 of 8 shots from 3-point range, for Wake Forest (6-9, 3-9). Antonio had the best 3-point shooting game in Wake history with a minimum of eight attempts from long range. He was 23 of 62 (37.1 percent) from deep coming into Saturday’s game.
Ian DuBose was one of three Wake players who fouled out, added 18 points on 6 of 9 shooting. Wake freshman guard Carter Whitt’s nine assists are the most by a Wake Forest freshman since Bryant Crawford dished out nine assists against Coastal Carolina on December 18th, 2015.
But Wake coach Steve Forbes lamented two missed free-throw attempts by DuBose in the final 13 seconds as well as Barnes’ final play of regulation in allowing the road upset to slip away.
“At the end of the day we got nobody to blame but ourselves for this loss,” Forbes said. “We had ourselves in position to win and we didn’t make the play or the plays that we needed to make.”
Florida State has now won 23 straight home ACC games, a streak that dates to a 77-68 win over Clemson on Jan. 22, 2019.
Barnes had 11 of his 13 points for Florida State in second half or overtime. M.J. Walker scored 14 points, giving him 976 for his career.
Malik Osborne also added eight rebounds. Despite being without Koprivica, Florida State still outrebounded Wake 39-32.
COMFORT OF HOME
Florida State has not lost a home ACC game in more than two years. The 23-game league win streak is now second in ACC history, just shy of Duke’s 26-game streak from Jan. 1997-Feb. 2000.
Hamilton said Koprivica turned his ankle in pregame warmups. The Seminoles did welcome back Anthony Polite, who missed four games with a shoulder injury. A junior guard, Polite scored 12 points and pulled down five rebounds.
Wake has struggled on the road but battled Florida State to the finish. Aside from the cold finish to end the first half, the Demon Deacons played the Seminoles evenly and nearly pulled off the upset.
Florida State played without starting center Balsa Koprivica and gave up too many baskets on easy drives. But the Seminoles made timely plays and had too much depth as Wake battled foul trouble.
The FSU-Wake box score can be viewed here.
Florida State plays host to Virginia on Monday at 7 p.m. (ESPN).