|FOOTBALL Regular Season|
|Aug 31||vs Toledo||
|Sept 7||AT Miami||TBA|
|Sept 21||vs Tennessee||
|Sept 28||AT Kentucky||TBA|
|Oct 5||vs Arkansas||
|Oct 12||AT LSU||TBA|
|Oct 19||AT Missouri||
|Nov 2||AT Georgia||TBA|
|Nov 9||vs Vanderbilt||
|Nov 16||AT South Carolina||TBA|
|Nov 23||vs Georgia Southern||
|Nov 30||vs Florida State||BA|
AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Erik Murphy had 18 points to lead four Florida players in double figures and the Gators shut down the NCAA's highest-scoring team Friday night, beating Northwestern State 79-47 in the second round of the South Regional.
No. 3 seed Florida (27-7) turned this one into a rout with a 19-1 run in the second half and held the 14th-seeded Demons (23-9) to their fewest points this season — 34 below their average.
Patric Young had 16 points and nine rebounds for Florida (27-7). Kenny Boynton and Scottie Wilbekin both scored 11.
DeQuan Hicks had 12 points for the Demons, who upset Iowa as the No. 14 seed in their last NCAA tournament seven years ago. They couldn't repeat that feat against the Gators, who lost in the regional finals each of the past two seasons.
Murphy and Boynton are seniors who arrived at Florida not long after the Gators had won consecutive national titles in 2006 and 2007. They have been to the NCAA tournament each of their four seasons, but the last two ended with losses in the regional finals.
This is the last chance for Murphy and Boynton to win a championship of their own, and they're off to a good start — even after Boynton missed most of the first half.
Florida plays Minnesota or UCLA on Sunday.
Boynton played only 8 minutes before halftime after two early fouls, but Florida kept going while he sat on the bench.
On his only shot before halftime, Boynton hit a 3-pointer for a 28-21 lead with 9:13 left. That was their biggest lead at that point, but less than a half-minute later Boynton was out for the rest of the half.
Florida added a point to their lead by the break, then the SEC regular-season champions put the game away with the big run that started when Murphy buried a 3-pointer from the right corner right in front of the Gators bench with 12:26 left.
Even with all of the Northwestern State's usual mass substitutions, nine of the 10 Demons played more minutes than Boyton did in the first half. The other matched Boyton's 8 minutes.
The Demons made wholesale changes five times in the first 15 minutes. Four times it was all five players switching out.
When there was a 5-for-4 switch with 11:14 left in the first half, Hicks was the only one to stay on the court.
Soon after play resumed, Hicks scored and then followed a Florida miss with a pass to O.J. Evans to get the Demons within 23-21. They never got closer after that.
Wilkbekin made a turnaround jumper from near the free-throw line, then Hicks had a bounce pass to Evans, who missed the layup. Then Boynton made his 3-pointer from the right wing.
Both teams shot well before halftime, Northwestern hitting 54 percent of theirs (13 of 24) and Florida 52 percent (17 of 33).
Northwestern, which got into the NCAA tournament after beating 27-win Stephen F. Austin in the Southland Conference tournament championship game, couldn't get anything to fall after halftime. They made only five of 26 shots.
The only time this season the Demons scored fewer points was 55, a win in one of their other Southland tourney games.
Florida's defensive dominance really shouldn't have been any surprise. The Gators came in the game third nationally allowing only 53.7 points a game while outscoring teams by 18 a game. The most points they gave up was 80 to Arkansas, and nobody else scored more than 67.
The Florida Gators are headed to Austin, TX for the first round of the NCAA Tournament to face off with Northwestern State of the Southland conference. The Gators won the SEC regular season title only to fall in the SEC tournament final to Ole Miss 66-63 earlier today.
You can catch the Gators game against the Demons on Friday.
Florida entered halftime in the driver seat with a 38-26 lead on Ole Miss, but collapsed in the second half, missing several opportunities from the free throw line to ultimately fall 66-63 to the Rebels in the SEC Tournament finals.
With a chance to force the game into overtime, Scottie Wilbekin missed both free throws with 4.2 seconds left in regulation, and Kenny Boynton's last-ditch three point effort glanced off the rim.
Boynton had 11 first half points, but only two in the second to finish with 13. Mike Rosario lead the Gators with 18 points and nine rebounds.
Florida walks away from the tournament still holding on to the Southeastern Conference regular season title, and having the No. 13 ranking, has securely punched a ticket to the NCAA Tourney. The Gators have not won the SEC Tournament since 2007 and did not win a game this season by fewer than 10 points.
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Kenny Boynton scored 11 straight points during a 15-0 second-half run Saturday as No. 13 Florida rallied from a 10-point, second-half deficit to beat Alabama 61-51 in a Southeastern Conference tournament semifinal.
The top-seeded Gators (26-6) advanced to Sunday's championship game against either Mississippi or Vanderbilt. Alabama (21-12), the tournament's No. 4 seed, will spend Sunday waiting to learn its fate from the NCAA tournament selection committee.
Held scoreless for the first 25 minutes of the game, Boynton finished with a game-high 16 points. Patric Young had 13 points and nine rebounds for the Gators. Mike Rosario added 10 points.
Trevor Releford scored 12 points and Nick Jacobs and Trevor Lacey each added 11 for Alabama.
Alabama led 37-27 with 16:05 remaining before Florida reeled off 15 straight points over the next five minutes.
The Florida Gators hardly broke a sweat on Friday afternoon. The 13th ranked Gators blew out LSU 80-58 in the SEC Quarterfinal round from Bridgestone Arena in Nashville. Florida advances to the semifinal round, where they will take on the winner of Tennessee and Alabama.
The Gators were able to get off to a good start. They hit 4 of their first 5 shots from the field to grab an 11-5 lead. Forward Erik Murphy really off to a good start. He started out 3 for 3 from the field and scored 15 points in the first half. He also grabbed 9 rebounds with four of them coming off the offensive glass. Florida shot a sizzling 56% from the field in the first half. Meanwhile, LSU shot just 41% in the first half and committed 7 turnovers. Gators reserve Michael Frazier had 8 points in the first half, including a 3-pointer as time expired. The Gators had a 43-28 lead going into the locker room at the half.
The Gators would pour it on in the second half. They went on a 13-5 run to take a 56-34 lead with about 15-minutes remaining. LSU didn’t put up much of a fight as Florida went for the throat. The Tigers only shot 33% from the field for the game. Gators went on a 30-10 run at one point to make it a 73-38 game with over 8-minutes left. Murphy led the charge with 27 points and 12 rebounds on 11-15 shooting. Scottie Wilbekin chipped in with 16 points. Frazier had 11 points off the bench.