TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – In yet another close ACC contest that went down to the wire, the Duke women’s basketball team dropped a 66-62 decision Sunday afternoon at the Donald L. Tucker Center in Tallahassee, Fla.
Duke (8-9, 0-5 ACC) featured only three players score on the afternoon as redshirt junior Haley Gorecki, junior Leaonna Odom and sophomore Jade Williams combined to score all 62 points for the Blue Devils. Gorecki had a game-high 25 points, while Odom added 20 points and Williams tied a career high with 17 points.
The game started with the Seminoles (16-2, 4-1) getting on the boards early with four offensive rebounds on the first possession, before securing the first points of the game off a layup by Valencia Myers.
After struggling with a season-low six points in the last game, Gorecki was hitting from the opening tip as she finished with seven first quarter points, while Odom was active with six points. The Blue Devils held as large as a five-point first quarter lead, before FSU sank a layup as time expired to cut the Duke lead to 15-14 heading into the second quarter.
The Seminoles caught fire in the second quarter hitting 56.3 percent from the field and outscored the Blue Devils, 27-13, to take a 41-28 lead at the half. It marked the third straight game Duke had trailed at the half and the eighth time this season.
Duke was led by Odom and Gorecki with 11 points each, but the Blue Devils committed 10 turnovers and the Seminoles scored 12 points off those turnovers. Williams added six points in 16 minutes.
Gorecki opened the third quarter by draining her second three-pointer of the contest to cut into the Seminole lead, but Florida State would increase its lead to 14, 47-33, at the 4:45 mark. The Blue Devils continued to fight going on a 12-4 run to close the third quarter trailing the Seminoles, 51-45. The quarter was sparked by Gorecki’s seven points, including a driving layup with time expiring at the end.
Duke held Florida State to only 23.1 percent shooting in the quarter, while the Blue Devils hit 58.8 percent.
The Seminoles would lead by as many as nine in the fourth quarter, but Duke continued to chip away at the lead and trailed by three, 60-57, with 3:51 remaining. The Blue Devils had a chance to tie, but was not able to connect.
Down by five with 29 seconds remaining, Gorecki notched her second steal of the afternoon and then found a streaking Odom for the bucket and foul. After finishing off the three-point play, Duke trailed 62-60 with 26 seconds on the clock. FSU went back up by four with 17 seconds left, but Odom sank two free throws to cut the lead to 64-62 with 8.8 seconds remaining.
FSU’s Amaya Brown increased the Seminole lead to four once again with 7.9 seconds remaining by sinking two free throws and the Blue Devils were not able to get any closer.
For the game, Duke hit 48.0 percent from the field, while holding Florida State to 40.3 percent. The Seminoles scored 19 points off 19 Blue Devil turnovers.
Gorecki, who hails from Palatine, Ill., became the second-quickest Duke player to reach 250 points, 100 rebounds, 50 assists and 50 steals in only 17 games. Only Alana Beard tallied those numbers quicker in 2001-02.
Duke will return home to host the first of two straight games in Cameron Indoor Stadium Thursday, Jan. 24 at 7 p.m., against Wake Forest. The game will be aired live on ACC Network Extra.