Kennedy Knisley – (Source: Seminoles.com) – INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. — Malik Osborne scored 12 points and pulled down six rebounds as Florida State fell to Michigan, 76-58, in its third consecutive NCAA Tournament Sweet 16 appearance.
The loss ended the season for Florida State, which entered the tournament as the No. 4 seed in the East Region. The Seminoles, the last ACC team to be eliminated, finished the season with an 18-7 overall record. No. 1 seed Michigan advanced to the Elite 8 with a 23-4 overall record.
After a slow start to the first half, the Seminoles went into the break down 32-21. They shot zero of seven from three-point range and committed 10 turnovers. However, they held Michigan to just 11 of 33 shooting from the field.
Sophomore Balsa Koprivica led with seven points at the half and Osborne led with four rebounds. Koprivica averaged 10.6 points per game and 2.0 blocked shots per game in the last five games.
The Seminoles seemed to regroup after the break, as senior M.J. Walker was able to close the gap to single digits (34-25) with 18:50 remaining. Osborne and redshirt junior Anthony Polite made back-to-back three pointers and were able to pull the Seminoles to within five — the closest they got since the early in the first half.
Osborne was four of seven from beyond the arc (.571) against the Wolverines and averaged nine points per game in the 2021 NCAA Tournament.
Freshman Scottie Barnes had eight points and a team-high three assists. Barnes also contributed a single steal and a single block for the Seminoles. In the last four games, Barnes averaged 9.8 points per game.
Polite added nine points, four rebounds, and a game-high three steals. He finished the season with at least one steal in each of the final eight games and totaled multiple steals in eight games this season. In the final four games of the season, Polite averaged 13.3 points per game.
Two points away from double-figure scoring, RaiQuan Gray scored eight points on three of five shooting (.600). The redshirt junior closed the 2020-21 season with a career-high 11.8 points per game average.
In his final game as a Seminole, Walker scored 10 total points. He averaged a career-high 12.2 points per game with a career-high 293 points this season. Walker has also made a career-high 95 field goals and totaled a career-high 61 assists in the 2020-21 season.
Florida State forced seven turnovers against the Wolverines for a total of 36 in the tournament. The Seminoles were five of six from the free-throw line (.833) and 24 of 60 from the field (.400). They held Michigan to three of 11 from beyond the arc (.273).
Michigan’s Hunter Dickinson and Brandon Johns had 14 points each and Franz Wagner added 13 points.
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