Instant Analysis: Florida drops second straight

Ole Miss 103 - Florida 85

by Joseph Torviso
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After a disappointing loss over the weekend to No. 6 Kentucky, Florida traveled to Mississippi for their second SEC matchup of the season. After a promising start to the game, the Gators crumbled and the Rebels quickly gained momentum.

Inside the Gators’ Instant Analysis takes a quick look at how the game unfolded.

IT WAS OVER WHEN: Jamarion Sharp blocked Zyon Pullin at the rim. The Rebels immediately went on a fastbreak, and Matthew Murrell scored a three-pointer extending their lead to 15 points. Florida lost all hope at that point, and it was evident that there wouldn’t be a come back.

THEY STOLE THE SHOW: It’s official. Walter Clayton Jr. has now scored over 1,000 points in the NCAA. He only needed nine points tonight, but he went above and beyond. Clayton Jr. is instrumental to this Gator offense having success. When he’s off the floor, Florida struggles to get things going. The guard ended the night with 23 points, 5 rebounds and 1 assist.

THESE STATS DON’T LIE:  Florida made 1-of-12 field goals during the Rebels’ 15-2 run that lasted over four and a half minutes. Todd Golden waited too long to call a timeout. The Gators were struggling to find momentum and their opponents took full advantage. After the timeout was called, the Gators seemed to find their rhythm again, but it wasn’t enough as they trailed 44-40 at the half.

THIS MATCHUP PROVED KEY: Jamarion Sharp against the Gator offense. It seemed that every shot Florida put up in the second half was blocked by the 7-foot-5 center. He was everywhere on defense, blocking shots in the paint and along the perimeter. Sharp ended the night with 9 blocks, 8 points, and 2 rebounds.

WHAT A PLAY: Matthew Murrell had an amazing game, and this put the cherry on top. After catching the ball in the corner, he was pressed by Denzel Aberdeen. Murrell dribbled inside his marker then stepped back for a three. Aberdeen stepped wrong and fell to the ground. As the Rebel bench went wild, Murrell drained the three.

UP NEXT: The (10-5) Gators are back home on Saturday to take on conference opponent Arkansas (9-6) looking for their first win in SEC play this season.

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