NCAA Tournament Orlando Recap: FSU and Xavier Advance to 2nd Round
ORLANDO, Fla. (FNN SPORTS) – The 2017 NCAA Tournament First Round games concluded Thursday night as the Xavier Musketeers challenged the Maryland Terrapins and the Florida State Seminoles played the Florida Gulf Coast Eagles in opening round games in the West Region.
Bluiett’s 2nd Half Explosion Leads Xavier To The Second Round
Xavier star guard Trevon Bluiett’s 2017 NCAA Tournament got off to a rough start. He went 1 for 8 shooting with three turnovers in the opening 20 minutes of the game. Even with the not-so-good start Xavier was only down by a point. The bad news for Maryland fans was that the junior guard had 20 minutes to change his night and did it in a big way.
Bluiett scored 18 of his 21 points in the second half as the Musketeers advanced to the second round by defeating Maryland by the score of 76-63. Bluiett hit 6 of his 7 shots, including four key 3-point baskets, to help his team outscore Maryland 41 to 29 in the half.
While Bluiett struggled in the first half, reserve big-man Sean O’Mara carried the offensive load for Xavier (22-13). O’Mara scored 11 points on a perfect 4 for 4 shooting and used his size and strength to score at will against the Maryland frontline. O’Mara finished the game with a career-high 18 points and grabbed 9 rebounds in the game.
Xavier held All-Big 10 shooting guard Melo Tremble to 13 points on 5 for 15 shooting. A lot of Tremble’s struggles came from the defense of Quentin Goodin and Malcolm Bernard. Tremble led the Terrapins in scoring with 17 points per game, but could not knock down shots, and neither could his back court mate Kevin Huerter. Huerter did score 19 points, but he missed 8 of his 13 attempted shots.
Xavier will take on the winner of Florida State/Florida Gulf Coast Saturday and Maryland ends their season at 24-9.
- Xavier: Bluiett – 21
- Maryland: Huerter – 19
- Xavier: O’Mara – 7
- Maryland: Huerter/Anthony Cowan – 4
- Xavier: Goodin – 9
- Maryland: Cowan/Huerter – 5
Florida State’s Bacon Shines As The Seminoles Survive Gulf Coast
Junior guard Dwayne Bacon scored 25 points and Jonathan Isaac added 17 points, 10 rebounds and 5 assists as the Florida State Seminoles eliminated the Florida Gulf Coast Eagles by the score of 86-80.
In an up-and-down affair, Florida State used its size advantage to punish the Eagles’ attempts to score at the rim. Florida State blocked nine shots in the game and held Gulf Coast to 41.8% shooting from the floor.
In a game where Florida State shot 55.6% from the floor, it was free throw shooting that kept Florida Gulf Coast in the game. Florida State shot 24-39 from the line and it allowed the Eagles to stay in the game until the very end.
“We didn’t shoot free throws very well down the stretch, and if you don’t knock those free throws down, you put yourself in position where this stuff can happen. It makes everything look bad.” – Florida State Head Coach Leonard Hamilton
Bacon scored his 25 points in a variety of ways, but mostly from the mid-range as he hit 11 of his 17 attempted shots in the game. Isaac used his 6’10” inch frame to block three shots and had two steals to lead the Seminoles’ defense charge late in the game.
Florida Gulf Coast was led by Brandon Goodwin, who had 28 points in the game, but he attempted 27 shots in the process. The team known for its high-powered slam dunks was out dunked 9-2 in the game.
Florida State will take on Xavier in a Second Round matchup on Saturday. Florida Gulf Coast finishes its season at 26-8.
- Florida State: Bacon – 25
- Florida Gulf Coast: Goodwin – 28
- Florida State: Issac – 10
- Florida Gulf Coast: Marc-Eddy Norelia – 6
- Florida State: Xavier Rathan-Mayes/Issac – 5
- Florida Gulf Coast: Goodwin – 7
Danny Thompson is a contributing sports reporter for Florida National News. He can also be found over at NBA Full Court Press Radio.
Orlando Magic Rally Late to Beat Washington Wizards 122-112
ORLANDO, Fla. (FNN) – The Orlando Magic had a lot of ground to make up for at home after their long road run, and the Washington Wizards didn’t make it easy on them–their defense greatly frustrated the Magic.
The Wizards led most of the first quarter, especially since the Magic made none of their three-pointers…until Moritz Wagner came in off the bench with just over two minutes left in the first. With a couple of shots, he switched the lead to Orlando by a single point at the end of the first quarter, 26-25.
Cole Anthony got a nice and-1 after his rebound from a failed Wizard free throw. Bradley Beal fouled him as he ran into the paint, but Anthony’s fadeaway shot was successful as he fell to the floor.
In the second quarter the Wizards regained the lead, but like in the first quarter, the Magic rallied near the end of the quarter. When Gary Harris, Markelle Fultz and the other Wagner, Franz, got back on the court, the Magic began sinking more shots.
Mo Wagner contributed 11 points in the first two quarters, while Franz, Harris and Anthony each followed with 10 points. The Magic also made up for their three-pointer deficit in second quarter. They were seven of 17 (41.2 percent) on threes in the first half compared to the Wizards’ five of 15 (33.3 percent) and were 23 of 43 on field goals (53.5 percent) compared to the Wizards’ 21 of 40 (52.5 percent).
For Washington, Deni Avdija and Monte Morris led the scoring with 12 points each; Kristaps Porzingis followed with 11 points.
The Magic secured a four-point lead heading into halftime, 60-56.
The Magic ended third quarter one point behind, 88-87.
The Magic brought the fire in the fourth quarter, getting on a run between Markelle Fultz, Wendell Carter Jr. and Paolo Banchero, who went to the free throw line three times late in the fourth and nailed every free throw. The highlight play of the second half happened within the final minute of the game: Banchero had pressure on him and made an ugly fadeaway baseline three-pointer…and sank it in.
The most critical hit of all was Bradley Beal fouling out of the game, which dealt a huge blow to the Wizards’ offense in the final stretch. Porzingis tried to pick up the slack, but the Magic saw the blood in the water and piled on the pressure, closing out the game with a 10-point win, 122-112.
For the night, Gary Harris led in scoring for the Magic with 22 points, going six for nine on three pointers and seven for 10 on field goals. Franz Wagner followed with 20 points with four rebounds and six assists. Banchero contributed 18 points and was six of six on free throws. Fultz contributed 17 points with five rebounds and five assists.
For the Wizards, Porzingis led the scoring by far, with 30 total points, six rebounds and three assists. Beal followed with 16 points, five rebounds and seven assists.
Mellissa Thomas is Editor for Florida National News. | email@example.com
Orlando Magic to induct Dennis Scott into their Hall of Fame March 23
Orlando, FL – The Orlando Magic will induct Dennis Scott into their Hall of Fame on Thursday, March 23 at 3:45 p.m. in Amway Center, near the Nutrilite Magic Fan Experience.** Scott will become the 12th member of the Orlando Magic Hall of Fame.
In addition to the induction ceremony, Scott will be honored that night during Orlando’s game vs. New York. Tip-off is at 7 p.m. and tickets are available through OrlandoMagic.com or by calling 1-800-4-NBATIX.
“Dennis (Scott) still remains one of the elite, long-range shooters in both Orlando Magic and NBA history,” said Martins. “His ability to shoot from beyond the three-point arc was a major key to our success during his time in Orlando and his records stand to this day. We are proud to make Dennis the next inductee into the Orlando Magic Hall of Fame.”
Originally selected in the first round (fourth overall) of the 1990 NBA Draft by Orlando, Scott played seven seasons with the Magic from 1990-97. He played in 446 regular season games (322 starts) with Orlando, averaging 14.8 ppg., 3.1 rpg. and 2.3 apg. in 30.7 minpg., while shooting .403 (981-2,432) from three-point range.
During the 1995-96 campaign, Scott set a then-NBA single season-record with 267 three-pointers made, a standard that lasted for ten years. The 267 three-pointers made remains the franchise record for most made in a season. On April 18, 1996 vs. Atlanta, Scott connected on 11 three-pointers, breaking the then-NBA single game-record, a mark that lasted for almost seven seasons. The 11 three-pointers made also remains the franchise record for most made in a game.
Scott also appeared in 41 playoff games (31 starts) with Orlando, averaging 12.2 ppg., 3.0 rpg. and 1.9 apg. in 33.8 minpg., while shooting .364 (92-253) from three-point range. On May 25, 1995 vs. Indiana, he made seven three-pointers during Game #2 of the Eastern Conference Finals, setting a franchise playoff-record that still stands today. Scott helped the Magic reach the 1995 NBA Finals.
Scott remains the Orlando Magic all-time leader in three-pointers made with 981. Entering this season, he also ranks among the franchise’s all-time leaders in three-point field goals attempted (second, 2,432), field goals attempted (seventh, 5,737), games played (eighth, 446), steals (eighth, 429), points scored (tenth, 6,603), field goals made (tenth, 2,421) and minutes played (tenth, 13,692).
The Orlando Magic unveiled its inaugural Hall of Fame class on April 9, 2014 with the first two inductees, Magic co-founder Pat Williams and the team’s first-ever draft pick and current community ambassador, Nick Anderson. Scott also joins Shaquille O’Neal (2015), the late Rich DeVos (2016), Anfernee Hardaway (2017), Jimmy Hewitt (2017), Tracy McGrady (2018), David Steele (2019), Darrell Armstrong (2020), John Gabriel (2022) and Brian Hill (2022) in the Orlando Magic Hall of Fame.
The Orlando Magic Hall of Fame honors and celebrates the great players, coaches and executives who have had a major impact during the team’s illustrious 34-year history. It bridges the past with the future of Magic basketball, and the exhibit, located in Amway Center on the terrace level near Nutrilite Magic Fan Experience, provides Magic fans an opportunity to learn some Magic history while in the building. The inductees are selected based on their overall on and off the court contributions to the team and organization, years of service, impact in the community and general character of the individual.
Jonathan Isaac to Miss Remainder of 2022-23 Regular Season Due to Another Injury
ORLANDO, Fla. – Orlando Magic forward Jonathan Isaac underwent surgery on Friday morning to repair a torn left adductor muscle and will miss the remainder of the 2022-23 regular season. An MRI conducted Wednesday revealed the injury, after he felt discomfort following Tuesday’s practice in Milwaukee.
“Our thoughts are with Jonathan, whose fortitude in dealing with adversity is unique,” said Orlando Magic President of Basketball Operations Jeff Weltman. “Jonathan has worked extremely hard to return to the court this season and has demonstrated his impact on our team. We will be by his side as he focuses on the work ahead.”
Isaac (6’10”, 230, 10/3/97) played in 11 games this season, averaging 5.0 ppg., 4.0 rpg. and 1.27 stlpg. in 11.3 minpg.
Originally selected in the first round (sixth overall) of the 2017 NBA Draft by Orlando, Isaac has appeared in 147 career NBA regular season games (106 starts), all with the Magic, averaging 9.0 ppg., 5.3 rpg., 1.0 apg., 1.43 blkpg. and 1.08 stlpg. in 24.7 minpg. He has also played and started in five career playoff outings, averaging 6.6 ppg., 6.2 rpg. and 1.00 blkpg. in 27.3 minpg.