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January 25, 2012
FSU dismantles Wake Forest, sits atop ACC standings
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. - Michael Snaer scored 18 points and No. 23 Florida State beat Wake Forest 75-52 on Wednesday night.
Okaro White added 11 points, Xavier Gibson had 10 and Snaer hit four 3-pointers to help the Seminoles (14-6, 5-1) win their fifth straight Atlantic Coast Conference game, their longest winning streak in league play in two years.
The ACC co-leaders shot nearly 51 percent, led the entire second half and broke the game open with an 18-2 run.
C.J. Harris scored 16 points to lead Wake Forest (11-9, 2-4), which lost center Ty Walker to a concussion late in the first half and couldn't overcome 18 turnovers or a rough game from No. 2 scorer Travis McKie. He finished a season-worst 1 of 13 and scored three points - well below his average of 17.
Still, the Demon Deacons twice pulled within two points in the second half, the last time coming with 17 minutes left when Tony Chennault's layup made it 32-30.
Bernard James countered with a hook shot in the lane, and that started the game-breaking surge.
Snaer - the star of Florida State's upset at Duke five days earlier - hit 3-pointers from the right wing roughly 90 seconds apart, and Jon Kreft's layup in the post stretched the lead to 50-32 with just under 10 minutes left.
By then, Florida State was well on its way to its third victory in 12 days against the ``Tobacco Road'' teams from North Carolina.
The Seminoles beat then-No. 3 North Carolina by 33 points in Tallahassee, Fla., before Snaer's buzzer-beating 3 gave the then-fourth-ranked Blue Devils their first home loss in nearly three years.
Unlike their instate rivals, the Demon Deacons aren't anywhere near the national rankings, instead losing for the fourth time in five games.
But this one didn't start to look like a blowout until midway through the second half.
Florida State didn't take its first lead until Luke Loucks' 3 made it 13-12 with just under 10 minutes left in the half. That came during an 18-7 run that was capped when Snaer's deep 3 from the right wing pushed the lead to 20-14 with 7 minutes before the break.
The Seminoles led 29-23 at halftime, but Wake Forest found a way to stay in the game despite a half in which the Demon Deacons had nearly twice as many turnovers (11) as field goals (six).
Nikita Mescheriakov had 13 points and Chennault finished with 11 for Wake Forest, which hasn't beaten the Seminoles since 2009.<
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