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Advocare Invitational Championship 2018: Villanova defeats Florida State 66-60

‘Nova stays thriving in Orlando.

NCAA Basketball: Canisius at Villanova Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Securing their sixth-consecutive in-season tournament championship, the Villanova Wildcats outlasted the Florida State Seminoles 66-60 in a tense match-up for the 2018 Advocare Invitational title.

While Villanova injected an quick sprint to the scoreboard during the game’s early minutes, Florida State soon established a slow, steady pace to grind-down the Wildcats’ ball movement. Soon, the game transformed into a molasses-paced brawl, with each team clawing through constant ties for single-possession leads.

Sophomore Collin Gillespie established his personal stride in the first half, and continued his offensive sharpshooting to carry Villanova until the game’s end. Finishing with a team-high of 17 points, Gillespie even shot with 100% field goal accuracy in the first half. While Gillespie lead ‘Nova’s shooting, fellow sophomore Dhamir Cosby-Roundtree carried the Wildcats’ rebounding efforts, leading the team with eight rebounds.

For the Seminoles, Mfiondu Kabengele and Trent Forrest lead Florida State’s shooting stats, scoring 11 points each. Additionally, Kabengele’s seven rebounds topped the team defensively.

While Villanova outshot Florida State 53% to 43% for field goals, the two teams shared nearly identical statistics for most other areas of play. An understandable feat, considering the game’s lead consistently volleyed between both teams in such close range. Florida State did give up 16 turnovers compared to ‘Nova’s 12; however, FSU did a marginally better job at securing points off turnovers.

Villanova next returns home to Philadelphia, playing La Salle on Saturday, December 1.