Miss State advances to first NIT semifinal in school historyMar 21, 2007 - 3:38 AM STARKVILLE, Mississippi (Ticker) -- Isaiah Swann made the highlight reels, but Mississippi State used fundamentals to advance to Madison Square Garden.
Swann made 9 3-pointers, but the top-seeded Bulldogs set a variety of season highs to post an 86-71 victory over second-seeded Florida State in the North Region finals of the National Invitation Tournament.
Jamont Gordon scored 16 points and Charles Rhodes added 14 and six rebounds for Mississippi State, which won its seventh straight home game and advanced to its first NIT semifinal in school history.
Mississippi State recorded season highs of 15 steals and 25 turnovers forced, and also shot a season-high 85 percent (23-of-27) from the line to compensate for shooting just 23 percent from the arc (7-of-30).
Although Gordon shot just 3-of-12 from the floor, he converted 9-of-11 free throws and added seven assists and three steals.
The Bulldogs, who had six players in double figures for the second time in six games, will play West Virginia next Tuesday.
The Seminoles shot 26-of-50 from the field, including 11-of-21 from the arc, but were hurt by turnovers.
Swann scored 31 points on 10-of-17 shooting. He attempted 13 shots from the arc.
NCAA BB NIT
FINAL 1ST 2ND TOTAL
--- --- -----
FLORIDA ST 29 42 71
MISSISSIPPI ST 42 44 86 FINAL
Mar 20 9:10 PM
NCAA BB (2) FLORIDA ST 29
(1) MISSISSIPPI ST 42 HALFTIME
Mar 20 7:51 PM
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