FLORIDA FOOTBALL & RECRUITING COVERAGE
Coming off their biggest win of the season, the Florida Gators (13-5, 4-2) had another chance for a quality victory. However, it was a tale of two halves for the LSU Tigers (14-4, 6-0) as they were able to overcome a sluggish first half to beat the Gators, 84-82.
After the programs played three thrilling games a year ago, it was much of the same with Florida having a chance to tie the game at the end of the game, but the Tigers were able to stave off the Gators.
Here is our Instant Analysis:
What Went Wrong: Unfortunately for the Gators, they were never able to take advantage of LSU’s sloppy play. The Tigers finished with 11 turnovers, with seven of those coming in the first half. Also in the first 20, LSU went on a 7-minute scoring drought. However, the Gators did little with the Tigers struggles offensively and had a mini-drought of their own.
The Gators couldn’t clean up LSU’s messes and were sloppy in their own regard. They turned the ball over 12 times, resulting in 19-points for the Tigers.
Who Stole The Show: It was a three-headed attack for LSU Tuesday night.
Emmitt Williams was a handful for the Gators to stop and he carried the Tigers to victory. He led the way with 19 points, proving to be just too physical for Florida to handle.
The Tigers had three other players in double-digits, with Skyler Mays scoring 18, 14 from Trendon Watford and Javonte Smart adding 13.
For Florida, they also had four players reached double figures, led by 16 points from Keyontae Johnson and Noah Locke. Andrew Nembhard and Kerry Blackshear Jr. both added 15.
These Numbers Don’t Lie: They came into the game as underdogs, but this was one that slipped out of the hands of the Gators. Failing to convert on the Tigers mishaps in the first half may have cost them another. One number that could sting for the Gators from this one could be how much they led in this one.
Florida led for 22-minutes in Baton Rouge, with ultimately nothing to show for it.
The Bottom Line: It was another chance for the Gators to earn a meaningful victory and they let one slip out of their hands. As mentioned, LSU were the favorites and are now in the midst of a 7-game winning streak, but the game was in Florida’s grasp.
It would’ve made for back-to-back wins over opponents in the NET Top-25 (Auburn 20, LSU 23). A win against the Tigers would’ve made for another win to make up some ground from the Gators slow non-conference start and also would’ve put them at a share of the lead in the SEC.
Luckily for the Gators, they will indeed get another chance to make a big, big statement their next time out.
Up Next: Another game, another test. But this time the task at hand gets much greater. The Gators are set to host the No.1 team in the country, the Baylor Bears, Saturday in the Big 12/SEC Challenge. Florida is 3-0 at home in the challenge, which includes a win over the Bears in 2018. Tip is set for 8 p.m with coverage on ESPN.
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