The State women downed number 17 FSU 80-57 to go to 16 and 2, 3 and 1 in the conference. Enjoy it!
Normally, it is the big two of Gatling and Burke, but tonight it was the big three as six-four Lakeesa Daniel joined the party. Gatling returned to herself going 8 for 8 from the field, scoring 20 points and pulling down 8 boards. Burke joined her with 16 points and 10 boards in 39 minutes. After Gatling picked up her second silly foul with just under ten minutes left in the first half, Daniel replaced her. At that point State was up, but one had to question how long that would last with Gatling on the bench. Gatling on the bench is what State opponents want. To this point, the senior year of Daniel had not been what she hoped, but tonight she became Gatling like, scoring 13 points on 5 of 9 shooting from the field and getting 8 rebounds-3 on the offensive end. State did not miss a beat with Daniel in the game in place of Gatling. By the way, FSU is a big team, so Gatling and Daniel were playing against players of their size.
A very big for Krystal Barrett. Krystal played an outstanding game dropping 5 dimes, scoring 8 points, getting 6 boards and playing outstanding defense on one of FSU's outstanding shooters Morgan Jones.
Like Kellie Harper in her first year at State, Wes Moore is playing with house money. In Harper's first year at State, she took Coach Yow's seniors and turned them into winners coaching them to the ACC tournament championship game and to the NCAA's. Coach Moore so far has turned Kellie Harper's seniors into mega winners and at this point has them as an NCAA tournament lock-maybe a four or five seed.
After Harper's first year, I wrote that she could coach, but I was not entirely correct as her three other teams did not play well. At this point I would write the same thing about Coach Moore-he can coach. Coach Moore's history supports this fact. I certainly see defensive and offensive play which suggest this view. FSU averages turning their opponent over about 22 times per game and uses a 1-3-1 zone press to do so. Harper's last three teams fell apart when being zone pressed. State tonight had only 8 turn overs the last occurring when State let the shot clock run out. Further, one can see how well Gatling and Burke play inside, and as such one has to credit Moore and his staff on coaching this part of the game.
At this point I would award Coach Moore as the conference coach of the year. If he does get that award, and it may not happen because there is a lot of ball to play, he will have one more ACC coach of the year awards than Coach Yow received. To the best of my knowledge Coach Yow despite being in the basketball Hall of Fame and winning a combined 9 regular season and tournament conference titles, was never awarded conference coach of the year. Guess what? The current coach of FSU women's basketball despite never winning a conference regular season or tournament title has already been awarded coach of the year twice. Coach Yow never being ACC coach of the year is a travesty.
What will be another travesty is not naming both Burke and Gatling to the ten player conference first team.