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Yellow Jackets Edged By No. 22 Florida State, 64-62

March 13, 2009

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ATLANTA (AP) -Derwin Kitchen scored the go-ahead layup with 7.7 seconds left as No. 22 Florida State beat Georgia Tech 64-62 on Friday to deny the Yellow Jackets a second straight ACC tournament upset.

Florida State (24-8) ended a streak of 11 straight losses in the quarterfinals while advancing to the semifinals for the first time since 1992, its first year in the league. Toney Douglas had 25 points for the Seminoles, who face the Tar Heels again in Saturday’s first semifinal.

Lewis Clinch scored 25 points for Georgia Tech (12-19), which beat No. 17 Clemson on Thursday.

Georgia Tech led 62-61, its first lead since 2-0, on Zach Peacock’s baseline shot with 29 seconds remaining.

Florida State called a timeout with 24.9 seconds left but, with three Georgia Tech defenders surrounding Douglas, the Seminoles had to call for another timeout with 9.9 seconds left.

Kitchen immediately drove to the basket and was fouled by Alade Aminu on his reverse layup with 7.7 seconds left. After Kitchen made the free throw, Iman Shumpert’s last-second attempt for Georgia Tech bounced off the rim.

Georgia Tech managed only two conference wins in the regular season and was the No. 12 seed in the tournament.

Clinch and Douglas were the stars until the final minute.

Douglas, from Jonesboro, south of Atlanta, was more accurate, making 11 of 16 shots. Clinch, from Cordele in south Georgia, made only 9 of 23 shots, including seven 3-pointers.

Gani Lawal and Shumpert each had 11 points for Georgia Tech, which had the support of many North Carolina fans in the announced Georgia Dome crowd of 26,352.

Solomon Alabi had 14 points for Florida State. Chris Singleton had five of the Seminoles’ seven blocks.

Clinch, who had a career-high 32 points in Georgia Tech’s win over Clemson, cut Florida State’s lead to 59-56 on his seventh 3-pointer with 4:32 remaining. Aminu added a basket about 25 seconds later, leaving the Yellow Jackets only one point behind the Seminoles.

Two free throws by Zachery Peacock with 1:34 remaining left Florida State with a 61-60 lead.

Clinch scored the first basket of the game, but that was Georgia Tech’s only lead until the final minute. The Seminoles led 15-6 before Georgia Tech pulled even with a 9-0 run, but Florida State recovered to lead 33-27 at the break and 49-41 about 7 minutes into the second half.

The teams combined for 37 turnovers, including 19 by Florida State.


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