Nov. 3, 2006
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WAKE UP CALL
After facing a team in the ACC Tournament they have never faced Wednesday, the Seminoles are back in action tonight against a more familiar opponent. Florida State has faced Wake Forest two previous times at the ACC Women's Soccer Championships and advanced past the Deacons on both occasions. In 2000 FSU moved to the semi-finals for the first time in program history after a 1-1 tie with Wake following a penalty kick shootout. Then in 2003, in Cary, NC, Florida State opened the tournament with a 1-0 win over the Demon Deacons on the team's run to its second ACC Championship game in three years. This will be the first ever meeting between the schools with a berth in the championship game on the line. Florida State's last appearance in the ACC Title game came in 2003 while Wake has not played for the title since 1999. FSU has two all-time title game appearances compared to just one for Wake.
In Florida State's quarterfinal game versus Duke, the Seminoles entered the game with a little extra motivation. FSU came into the match with a chance to avenge one of just two regular season losses and they did just that. The win over Duke marked the first time FSU had ever beaten a team in the ACC Tournament that they lost to during the regular season. Now it is Wake Forest's turn to come into a game with a chip on their shoulder as they will try to get back at Florida State for handing the Demon Deacons a 3-2 loss in Winston-Salem on their senior night. Wake already avenged one loss when they eliminated a Virginia team that beat them 2-1 earlier this season. FSU's win over Duke was rare. Before Wednesday, every time FSU has won a game at the ACC Tournament the victory came against a team they had either defeated or tied in the regular season. In 2001 FSU beat Maryland 2-0 and 7-2. In 2003 the Seminoles tied Wake 0-0 and then beat them 2-1 and beat Maryland 2-1 and then again 1-0. Last year it was 3-0 and 4-0 wins over Clemson.
CARY NOT SO SCARY
When you consider the FSU's only games at the SAS Soccer Complex have come in the ACC Tournament and the 2003 College Cup, the team has fared pretty well at the stadium. With their 2-0 win over Duke Wednesday night, the Seminoles are now 4-3-1 all-time at the stadium and 4-2-1 in ACC Tournament games played there. Florida State is 1-1 in semi-finals game played at SAS beating Maryland 1-0 in 2003 and losing to Virginia 2-0 last season. Cary is the only ACC Tournament location where FSU has a winning record. The only other tournament site where Florida State has ever won a game is in Winston-Salem ironically when Wake Forest hosted the tournament in 2001. That year Florida State won their quarterfinal match 7-2 over Maryland.
For the second time in two weeks Florida State will face Duke and Wake Forest in back-to-back games. Earlier this season the Seminoles went to Winston-Salem and beat Wake 3-2 but followed that up with a 3-1 loss at Duke. This week the order is flipped but once again the Seminoles will see the same two squads in a span of four days. FSU has fared pretty well when facing the Deacons and Devils in back-to-back games. Florida State has played the schools in consecutive games in three seasons (2002, 2005 and 2006) and posted a 4-2-1 record in those matches including Wednesday's win over Duke. Florida State has only swept Duke and Wake Forest when playing them in back-to-back games and that came in 2005. Last year FSU beat Wake 4-1 and followed that up with a 2-1 double OT win versus Duke. Florida State will need to repeat that success in it wants to play for the ACC Tournament title.
THEY ARE ONE OF THE FEW
Florida State's success in overtime games is pretty remarkable when it comes to getting a result. In 36 all-time overtime games, the Seminoles have only lost four of those matches. In program history Florida State has posted a 14-4-18 record in extra time games. Since the team lost to Virginia in OT on September 11, 1998, FSU has lost just one of its last 30 OT games (14-1-15). The only team that has beaten FSU in overtime over seven-plus seasons is Wake Forest. The Deacons scored the only golden goal allowed by FSU in the last 30 overtime games on October 12, 2002. Three of FSU's four overtime defeats came at home and all four have come against ACC teams. The only OT game FSU ever lost at an opponent's field was back in 1995 versus North Carolina in the first ever meeting between the teams.
ONE MORE WIN WOULD DO IT
If Florida State is able to get past Wake Forest and into the conference championship, the Seminoles would cement themselves as the most successful ACC Tournament team this decade behind only North Carolina. Although Virginia has won a title, with a win Friday FSU will have played in the second-most title games advancing to three championships in the last seven years. While Florida State, North Carolina and Virginia are the only three teams at .500 or above in the ACC Tournament this decade, only UNC has advanced into the semi-finals more times than Florida State in the last seven tournaments. A victory would be the sixth this decade for FSU as the Seminoles would join Carolina as just the second team with six wins in the last seven tournaments.
ACC Tournament Records (since 2000)
WHAT A DEBUT
Seminole freshman Onnie Trusty was a top 50 recruit by Soccer Buzz magazine but her Florida State career got off to a rocky start. The midfielder had hip surgery in high school that forced her to miss her entire senior season. She came to FSU still recovering from that surgery. She did not appear in her first game until she started September 14 versus FAU. Since that game she made just one start the rest of the regular season although she did appear in eight games. Her third career start came in the first ACC Tournament game of her career and boy did she make it count. Trusty scored the first goal of the game versus Duke off a corner kick that she headed home. Trusty's game-winning goal was only the second ever scored by an FSU freshman in the tournament and the first by a freshman with less than five career starts. The only other Seminole to score a game-winning goal in the ACC Tournament in her freshman season was Camie Bybee. Bybee did it in 2001 when she scored FSU's third goal in a 7-2 win over Maryland. Trusty did do something no other FSU player has ever done versus Duke. Trusty is the first Seminole in school history to ever record her first career game-winner in an ACC Tournament game. Quite a debut.