Florida State wasn't expecting Boston College's Tyrelle Blair to be much of an offensive factor in his return home Sunday for the ACC showdown between the Seminoles and the Eagles.
After all, the Monticello native, who attended Florida High in Tallahassee as a senior, was averaging just 2.4 points per game for Boston College entering the contest.
In the end, that expectation proved to be partly true as Blair only managed four points but hit a midrange jumpshot with 3.3 seconds left in the game allowing the Eagles (18-6, 8-2 ACC) to beat the Seminoles (17-6, 5-6 ACC) 68-67 at the Donald L. Tucker Center.
The defensive-minded Blair finished with six rebounds and six blocks.
"He's probably the guy that if we had to pick we would want taking the final shot," FSU coach Leonard Hamliton said. "Blair hit a jumpshot that you normally don't see him make."
Boston College coach Al Skinner, who's team had beaten FSU 85-82 in January on a buzzer-beating 3-pointer, was pleased that his junior center was able to grab the spotlight when it mattered most.
"I am just extremely happy for him because he comes back home," Skinner said. "There were no stories written about him coming home. He's a local guy playing on a pretty good basketball team. No one cared … I am talking about locally, That's a little disappointing to me.
"The end was very fitting, I could have never expected it."
Blair's game-winner was set up by what Florida State fans thought was a missed call by the game's officials.
Following a blocked shot by FSU's Al Thornton, Ryan Reid grabbed the loose ball for the Seminoles but lost it out of bounds when it appeared as though he was pushed from behind with just under 10 seconds left to play.
The officials ruled Reid never had possession before losing it and gave the ball back to the Eagles with six seconds left on the shot clock.
"I am not going to nitpick on those types of things," Hamilton said when questioned about whether or not he thought Reid was fouled. "We had plenty of opportunities to make plays but we just came up short."
Thornton led the Seminoles, who have now lost two straight ACC games after beating Duke on the road earlier this month, with 19 points.
Jason Rich and Isaiah Swann added 16 and 13 points for the Seminoles, who were without the services of starting point guard Toney Douglas. The Jonesboro, Ga. native broke a bone in his hand in the loss to Clemson earlier in the week and is not expected to return for the rest of the regular season.
Junior Ralph Mims started in his place and scored nine points and had just one turnover.
"I thought Ralph did a very good job other than getting a couple of fouls early," Hamilton said. "We knew he would."
Florida State took a 37-33 advantage in to the break despite shooting just 38 percent from the field and 17 of Eagle guard Tyrese Rice's 23 total points.
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