Mfiondu Kabengele buried a tie-breaking 3-pointer with two seconds remaining in overtime Friday, delivering 14th-ranked Florida State a 79-76 victory over 19th-ranked LSU in the semifinals of the Advocare Invitational in Orlando, Fla.
The win sends the Seminoles (5-0) into the tournament finals on Sunday against Villanova, which beat Oklahoma State 77-58 in Friday’s earlier semifinal.
The Tigers (5-1) will face the Cowboys for third place, also on Sunday.
After Florida State’s Trent Forrest sent the game into overtime with a game-tying layup with two seconds remaining in regulation, the Seminoles quickly built a five-point lead in the extra session on a hoop by Kabengele and a 3-pointer by M.J. Walker.
LSU rallied into a 73-all tie before Florida State’s Terance Mann made one of two free throws with 59 seconds left, then two of two with 19 seconds left, creating a three-point lead.
Tremont Waters, fouled on a 3-point attempt, got the Tigers even one last time by making three straight foul shots with 11 seconds left before Forrest assisted Kabengele on his game-winner.
Walker led all scorers with 21 points for Florida State, which beat Alabama-Birmingham 81-63 to earn a spot in the semifinals.
Kabengele had 15 points off the bench, Forrest added 10, and Mann chipped in with nine to complement a game-high 12 rebounds for the Seminoles, who outrebounded the Tigers 43-30.
Skylar Mays had 19 points to lead the Tigers, who disposed of Charleston 67-55 in the first round.
Ja’vonte Smart had 16 points to go with a game-high eight assists for LSU, while Naz Reid totaled 12 points and Waters 11.
After a tight first 39 minutes, Florida State needed a late flurry to get the game to overtime.
With his team down 67-63, Walker nailed a 3-pointer with 18 seconds left to make it a one-point game. Then after Waters made one of two free throws for a 68-66 LSU lead, Forrest dropped in his buzzer-beating layup to forge the tie.
—Field Level Media