Published: Mon, March 19, 2018

9 over 8 and ACC over SEC: Florida State beats Mizzou

9 over 8 and ACC over SEC: Florida State beats Mizzou

Florida Gulf Coast won the Atlantic Sun regular-season and tournament titles, and the Eagles were able to frustrate the Tigers throughout the game as Missouri's perimeter defense was continually challenged.

The rollercoaster that has been Missouri's 2017-18 season came to an end late Friday night, as the Tigers fell to the Florida State Seminoles 67-54 in the first round of the NCAA Tournament at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tennessee.

These teams met in the second round a year ago, with Xavier pulling off the upset as an 11 seed over third-seeded Florida State.

Chatrice White and Nikki Ekhomu each scored 13 points and AJ Alix added 12 for Florida State.

We put four guys in the game there and we left Phil on the court, one of our most experienced players. Freshman phenom Michael Porter Jr., whom many believe was also playing his last game as a Missouri Tiger, played 28 minutes and finished with 16 points. Even with new players and a new coach in Cuonzo Martin, the Tigers head home from their first NCAA trip since 2013 with the program's fourth straight loss in a first round.

Nelson, saddled with four fouls for much of the second half, scored seven of her 11 points in a span of about a minute, helping to stave off a comeback attempts from the Tigers, including a contested three with 5:53 left that pushed the FGCU lead to 72-59.

Sophie Cunningham of Missouri was phenomenal, pouring in a game-high 25 points.

Runs of 11-0, 13-0 and 15-0 coupled with a dominant first-half defensive performance keyed the Seminoles' victory.

FSU was buoyed by contributions from forward P.J. Savoy (12 points) and guard Braian Angola (8 points and three assists) as 10 Seminoles scored while wearing down Mizzou. Florida State went into the break up 42-20, and all 10 Seminoles who played scored.

Porter, who is projected to be a top-five pick in the 2018 National Basketball Association draft if he declares, amassed 16 points, 10 rebounds and three steals. The Tigers turned the ball over 10 times in the first half alone.

Little Rock allowed a season high in points.

Mississippi State 95, Nicholls 50: Victoria Vivians scored 20 points and grabbed 13 rebounds to lead Mississippi State (33-1).

The Tigers pulled within 52-44 on a pair of free throws by Porter as Missouri opened the second half by outscoring Florida State 24-8.

FSU will now rematch with Xavier, who they lost to in the 2017 NCAA Tournament.

Player of the game: Redshirt senior guard China Dow led the strong bench effort for Florida Gulf Coast, scoring 21 points. No that is not a typo, they only won eight games for the entire season, and only two in the SEC. Leading scorer and rebounder Terance Mann did leave the game after slipping to the floor in the second half and did not return.

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