FSU shoots past Maryland 96-79

Seminoles even their conference record Tuesday night in their best shooting game of the season.

Thanks to some hot-shooting, the Florida State men's basketball team evened its Atlantic Coast Conference record Tuesday night as they beat Maryland 96-79.

The Seminoles (16-6, 4-4 ACC), shot a season-high 61.7 percent from the field. They used a 12-2 run to start the second half of play and never looked back after leading by three points at halftime.

"In the second half, I thought our guys came out with tremendous energy," FSU Coach Leonard Hamilton said. "We didn't worry about the mistakes of the first half. We maintained a positive attitude and worked our way through it."

Senior forward Al Thornton proved to be unstoppable force for the Terrapins (16-6, 3-4 ACC). The Perry, Ga. native posted game-highs in points (27) and rebounds (8). It was his sixth 20-plus-point game in seven contests.

His impressive performance was highlighted by one-handed dunk midway through the second half when he took of from just one step past the free-throw line.

"He's a special player," Maryland Coach Gary Williams said. "He's that big and can go on the perimeter and make some of the dribble moves he made to pull off the jump shots in addition to his inside game … he's certainly a special player."

Aiding in the victory was junior guard Jason Rich, who posted a career-high 24 points.

Rich's performance was just one-third of the outstanding guard play by the FSU perimeter players. Isaiah Swann and Toney Douglas each added 15 and 16 points, respectively.

Swann recorded two four-point plays in the game.

"I said all along that in order for us to beat teams of this caliber, we are going to have to be able to win games by committee," Hamilton said. "Even though Al is playing at a very very high level, I am happy to see Isaiah, Toney and Jason there finally coming around."

The Seminoles travel to Duke this weekend looking for their first conference road victory of the season. Tip-off is slated for Sunday at 2 p.m.

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