Instant Analysis: Florida erases 18-point deficit to beat Texas A&M

Florida 95 - Texas A&M 90

by Ben McLeish
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Florida overcame an 18-point deficit for a 95-90 victory against Texas A&M in the SEC Tournament semifinals. The Aggies put up 50 points in the first half, but the Gators adjusted defensively and scored 53 in the second to defeat A&M. The red-hot Gators’ offense is averaging 94 points per game in the SEC Tournament.

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

IT WAS OVER WHEN: Wade Taylor IV missed an open look at a 3-pointer with the Aggies down four points with under 30 seconds left in the game. Will Richard secured the rebound and the Gators iced the game at the charity stripe.

THEY STOLE THE SHOW: Who else but Denzel Aberdeen led the Gators with 20 points. His surge in the first half kept the Gators in the game. He was 6-of-9 from the floor and had four steals for a career night.

THESE STATS DON’T LIE: Denzel Aberdeen, who averages 2.6 points per game, led the Gators in scoring in the first half with 12 points. His spark off the bench proved crucial in getting the Gators back in the game and reducing the Aggies lead from 18 to 8 points going into halftime.

THIS MATCHUP PROVIDED KEY: Wade Taylor IV against Zyon Pullin and Walter Clayton Jr. Taylor IV was unstoppable in the first half, putting up 20 points and leading the Aggies to an eight-point lead. But Pullin and Clayton Jr. limited Taylor IV to just 10 points in the second half.

WHAT A PLAY: Up by seven points with three minutes left in the game, Walter Clayton Jr. hit a contested 3-point shot over Solomon Washington, who fouled Clayton Jr. on the play. Clayton Jr. knocked down the free-throw to complete the four-point play and put the Gators up by 11 points.

UP NEXT: The Gators (24-10, 11-7) are heading to the SEC Tournament finals for a date with No. 12 Auburn (26-7, 13-5). The Gators dominated the Tigers in their first matchup in the O’Connell Center. The Gators are looking for their first SEC Championship since 2014.

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