Preview: Virginia at Florida State
Florida State looks to extend its winning streak to five games as it opens Atlantic Coast Conference play by hosting Virginia on Saturday. The Seminoles followed up a triumph over No. 22 Massachusetts last weekend by defeating Charleston Southern 67-59 on Monday - a margin of victory that wasn't necessarily as wide as expected but was a positive result nonetheless. "It was a good win," guard Aaron Thomas told the Tallahassee Democrat. "We feel like if we work on the little things, we are ready for the ACC."Following a 7-1 start to the season, the Cavaliers are just 2-3 in their last five games - including an 87-52 trouncing at the hands of Tennessee last time out. Coach Tony Bennett challenged his team to find its identity at halftime against the Volunteers. "Who are you?" he asked his club, according to the Charlottesville Daily Progress. "We've got to determine who we are." TV: 5 p.m. ET, ESPN2ABOUT VIRGINIA (9-4): Bennett noted a lack of cohesion for his squad in the loss to Tennessee, saying, "We were just disjointed. We looked slow. We looked tired and delayed in our reactions." With conference play now staring the Cavaliers in the face, Bennett added that the time is now to get it together. "We're not going to win many games in the ACC if we're not going to answer the bell."ABOUT FLORIDA STATE (9-3): The Seminoles enter ACC play second in the conference in both field-goal percentage (48.7) and field-goal percentage defense (37.3). Coach Leonard Hamilton's tenure at Florida State has been marked by staunch defense, but after a lull in last year's disappointing season, the focus was re-emphasized in the offseason. "There was no doubt that we had to improve (on defense) in order for us to be successful," Hamilton said. "We pointed that out (to the team) - loud and clear."TIP-INS1. The Seminoles lead the all-time series against Virginia 27-20 and are 16-4 against the Cavaliers at home.2. Virginia ranks dead last in the conference in scoring, averaging 64.8 points.3. Florida State averages 6.7 blocks per game - good for second in the ACC behind Clemson (7.2) and 12th in the nation.PREDICTION: Florida State 72, Virginia 65
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