LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — Andrew Platek notched a career-high 20 points, Javian McCollum added 18 with a career-high eight assists and Siena beat Florida State 80-63 to open Thursday’s ESPN Events Invitational.
The Saints (3-2), picked for sixth place in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference, jumped to the Seminoles (1-5), picked for fifth in the Atlantic Coast Conference. early, survived a few small runs and led by as much as 20 late in the game.
Siena had not beaten a Power 5 team in eight years, an ACC team in 12 years, or won a game in two previous appearances in this tournament. It was also the 50th win for head coach Carmen Maciariello, the fourth-year coach who graduated in 2001.
The Saints get another shot at a signature win against the Ole Miss-Stanford winner on Friday. FSU plays the loser.
Siena shot 58%, McCollum scored 12 points and Platek 10, going 43-26 at halftime ahead of the Seminoles, who were shooting 30%.
The Saints broke a 5-5 tie for an 11-0, with Jayce Johnson scoring four points and Platek hitting a 3-pointer. Florida State brought it back to 22-20 on an 11-2 run when Cam’Ron Fletcher converted a three-point play and hit a 3-pointer 20 seconds apart. Again, the Saints shot forward with nine points and then closed the halftime with a 10-0 run. McCollum had a 3 in the first burst and a second 3 and four free throws in the closing run.
In the final second of the half, 7-foot-4 Seminole Naheem McLeod was hit and ejected with a flagrant 2 foul.
Matthew Cleveland opened the second half with back-to-back dunks and Florida State scored the first eight points to get back to nine, but Zek Tekin and Jackson Stormo had back-to-back layups to make it 47-34 and the Saints stayed in double digits ahead the rest of the way .
FSU had a final 8-0 run to win at 70-59 with more than four minutes remaining, but McCollum had four points, Platek made his fifth 3-pointer in six tries and the lead was 79 with two minutes remaining : 59 .
The difference was shooting, as rebounds, turnovers, free throws taken, and shot attempts were almost even. Siena finished 9-of-22 from 3-point range and 52% overall while the Seminoles were 4-of-15 from range and 36%.
Cleveland led FSU with 14 points and Fletcher had 13. The Seminoles, who won that tournament in 2009 and lost in their other appearance in the title game, have now lost to Mercer, Stetson, UCF, Troy and Siena this season.
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