Instant Analysis: No. 24 Florida falls to No. 13 Alabama in overtime

No. 13 Alabama 98 - No. 24 Florida 93

by Joseph Torviso
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Please Read: Welcome to the new-look Inside the Gators

Coming into Tuscaloosa, the Gators were ranked for the first time this season. After deservedly earning their No. 24 ranking, they fell just short at the end in the most important game of their season yet. Florida fell 98-93 to No. 13 Alabama.

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

IT WAS OVER WHEN: Aaron Estrada made his layup with seven seconds to go in the game. Walter Clayton Jr. dribbled quickly up the court and shot a tough three which missed. Alabama grabbed the rebound with two seconds left in the game.

THEY STOLE THE SHOW: Walter Clayton Jr. is a big game player. The junior had six points an assist and a rebound in overtime. His efforts weren’t enough at the end as the 7-0 run Alabama started overtime with was too much to overcome. Clayton Jr. ended the game with 27 points, eight boards, and five dimes.

THESE STATS DON’T LIE: Alabama went 2-18 from three in the first half. The Crimson Tide didn’t attempt their first three of the second half until nine minutes in, but went 5-8 which revived their chances of winning this game. Alabama struggled again from beyond the arc in overtime going 1-5, but its second-half effort was enough to spoil Florida’s party.

THIS MATCHUP PROVIDED KEY: Senior guard vs senior guard.

Zyon Pullin and Mark Sears played great for their respective teams. Both guards scored 17 points, but Sears had eight assists and seven rebounds while Pullin had six assists and 4 boards. A great performance for both, but Alabama’s guard wins the matchup.

WHAT A PLAY: After dunking on LSU early last week, Walter Clayton Jr. got a taste of his own medicine. Grant Nelson drove to the basket and leaped over the junior. Nelson was fouled and converted on the three-point play.

UP NEXT: The No. 24 (18-8, 8-5) Gators are back home on Saturday to take on conference opponent (7-18, 2-10) Vanderbilt. The Commodores are playing now against Georgia.

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