Virginia had to know Michael Snaer was going to get the ball Thursday night with Florida State trailing by a point and 12.8 seconds remaining.
Even so, the Cavaliers still couldn't stop him.
Snaer added to his reputation as college basketball's King of Clutch, freeing himself via a baseline screen, drawing contact from Joe Harris after beating him off the dribble and scoring the go-ahead layup plus the free throw. The result was a 53-51 Seminoles victory and Snaer's sixth final-possession game-winning shot of the last two seasons.
Although the victory doesn't do a whole lot for a Florida State team that is still below .500 in the ACC even after the win, Snaer's heroics were highly damaging for Virginia. The Cavaliers, who looked to be in good shape after upsetting Duke last Thursday, have since lost two in a row at Boston College and Florida State to put themselves in jeopardy of missing the NCAA tournament.
At 20-10 overall and 10-7 in the ACC, Viginia has a wealth of quality wins against Duke, Wisconsin, North Carolina and NC State, but the bad losses seem to be mounting by the week. A setback at Florida State is nowhere near as bad as previous losses to three CAA schools, Wake Forest and Boston College, but it does further cement Virginia's inability to win on the road in ACC play.
Virginia deserved its fate Thursday for not doing a better job forcing someone else to win the game besides Snaer, who was candid last month when he told me his teammates expect him to take the big shot late in a close game and expect him to make it.
Said Snaer, "It was funny to me to hear them say that, but it's a good feeling knowing that your teammates, your coaches and the fans at home are thinking in their heads, 'We got this because we've got Mike.'"