The Hurricanes escaped from their fiercest rival’s home court with a win on Wednesday, defeating Florida State 74-68.
Miami (20-3, 11-0 ACC) got off to a sluggish start, and the Seminoles’ hot shooting opened up an early 13-2 lead. But the Canes then rattled off a 25-5 run late in the first half that turned the tables and put them up double digits.
Devon Bookert beat the buzzer for FSU (13-11, 5-6 ACC) with a 3-pointer that cut Miami’s lead to 38-30 at halftime.
Miami overcame an off-night for senior forward Kenny Kadji, who fouled out in 17 minutes and scored just three points. Prior to Wednesday’s matchup in Tallahassee, Kadji had reached double digits in 13 consecutive games.
The Seminoles nearly pulled off a quick comeback with a 14-0 run that tied the game at 51-51, but the third-ranked Canes never surrendered the lead and pulled away late.
Shane Larkin led all scorers with 22 points on 9-for-15 shooting, including a crucial stretch of seven straight points that seemed to seal the win.
Miami came out of the UCF Challenge on Tuesday with its lowest round of the season, posting a score of 289 to finish fourth in the tournament.
The final round tally was tied for the fourth-lowest round in program history. No. 9 North Carolina came away with the victory, with Tulane and UCF finishing second and third.
The Canes are off until Feb. 25, where they will participate in the Sir Pizza Challenge in Miami Lakes, Fla.
The No. 12 Hurricanes women’s tennis team now have three singles players and a doubles tandem ranked in the newest ITA Women’s Tennis Rankings. Freshman Kelsey Laurente is ranked No. 52 after compiling an 8-2 record in the spring. Clementina Riobueno also comes in at No. 104, with teammate sophomore Lina Lileikite ranked No. 92. Lileikite, along with teammate and doubles partner Stephanie Wagner, is ranked No. 42 in doubles play. The Canes face off against Florida State at the Neil Schiff Tennis Center at 11 a.m. Feb. 23.
Miami added two recruits to its class of 16 signees this week, both of which will help fill offensive voids next season.
Four-star running back Cornelius Elder committed to the Hurricanes on Wednesday and Ryheem Lockley, a versatile athlete who is expected to play tight end, signed Tuesday.
The 5-foot-10 Elder found the end zone 84 times during a high school career that led him to Tennesee’s “Mr. Football” award in 2011 and 2012. He carried his team to three consecutive state championships, along with another two state titles as a point guard for the school’s basketball team.
“It’s a great marriage for us,” coach Al Golden told 790 The Ticket on Wednesday. “We have a need at that position [running back]. Excellent speed, lateral quickness, change of direction.”
While Miami did not recruit Elder in basketball, he was rated the 35th-best point guard in the 2013 class. Elder turned down offers from Division I schools like Purdue, and will likely play behind current sophomore point guard Shane Larkin next year.
With the loss of coveted recruit Alex Collins to Arkansas, Elder is a boost to a Hurricanes backfield that lacks support for ACC Rookie of the Year Duke Johnson.
Lockley has an equally illustrious resume as he joins the Hurricanes as a tight end. He surpassed 1,000 rushing yards this past season and caught eight touchdowns when he lined up as a receiver for the first time. Lockley started at quarterback the previous three years for his Saluda, Va., high school.
To top things off, the star athlete is averaging 30 points per game as an all-state basketball player.
Information compiled from hurricanesports.com.
Ernesto Suarez and Spencer Dandes can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.