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Gators Can’t Miss From Three, Pull Away from Tennessee

Incredible shooting helped Florida turn a close game into a 13-point win in the final minutes.

NCAA Basketball: Tennessee at Florida Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

A game neither team led by more than six points for the first 32 minutes turned at the three-point line. After Detrick Mostella nailed a three to cut Florida’s lead to one just under the eight minute mark, KeVaughn Allen ignited an incredible Florida run. He hit back-to-back threes to push the lead to seven. Tennessee would get no closer than three from there, and when they did Allen immediately hit another three. The Vols were still within six with two minutes to go, but late free throws padded the Gator lead to its eventual margin of 13.

Florida was 7-of-7 from the three point line in the second half. Some of them were contested looks, some of them weren’t, but either way that’s incredibly difficult to deal with. Both teams shot 50% from the floor in a thoroughly-entertaining game for those first 32 minutes, but the Vols were also done in by 19 turnovers; Florida had only 11 and only two in the second half.

Allen and Justin Leon combined to shoot 7-of-10 from the arc for the game. The Vols did get 18 points and 10 rebounds off the bench from Admiral Schofield, who had a great game against Florida last year. Jordan Bowden had a nice bounce-back game with 15 points as well. For the first time this year Tennessee shot the ball well from the arc in a loss (6-of-14), but obviously Florida shot it better.

The loss drops the Vols to 8-7 (1-2), with South Carolina coming to Knoxville on Wednesday. This one won’t cost UT too much in any ratings, but the schedule gets no easier and Tennessee needs to find a win in here somewhere to regain momentum.