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January 18, 2014

Instant Analysis: Gators survive unexpected scare



Style points were not earned, but No. 7 Florida (15-2, 4-0 Southeastern Conference) went into Auburn Arena Saturday afternoon and avoided what would have been a major upset. The Tigers (8-7, 0-4 SEC) couldn't hang on to shock the Gators and ended up with a 68-61 loss. Instant Analysis takes a look.

IT WAS OVER WHEN: Senior point guard Scottie Wilbekin drove into the lane, pulled up short of the basket and hit a hanging jumper over multiple Auburn defenders. There was just over one minute left in the game. At the other end, the Tigers missed a 3-point attempt throwing the game into a foul-and-free throw conclusion. Wilbekin finished the game with 16 points and three rebounds.

HE STOLE THE SHOW: Saturday was Casey Prather's first game action since waking up Jan. 9 with knee swelling. He didn't miss a beat. Florida's star senior forward and leading scorer got off to a hot start and sustained it throughout the afternoon. After 16 of Florida's 32 points in the first half, Prather finished with 21 points, six rebounds and one assist.

THE STAT DOESN'T LIE: Auburn gave Florida much more of a game than it probably expected, but the overall stats weren't that out of the ordinary for the Tigers. As they have all season, Auburn's guards kept their team in it. KT Harrell and Denson combined for 39 points, fairly status quo for players who entered averaging about 19 per game on the season. The surprising part? Auburn - 12th in the SEC in 3-point shooting - made seven 3-point baskets, including six from Harrell and Denson.

WHAT A PLAY: Prather didn't take long to show his bruised right knee wouldn't be an issue. About midway through the first half, Prather worked the ball inside before going into rare post mode and nailing a jump hook over 7-foot Auburn center Asauhn Dixon-Tatum while drawing contact. Prather sunk the ensuing free throw to finish the 3-point play.

THE BOTTOM LINE: The storyline of the 2013-2014 season has been an increase in fouls and a decrease in pace of play. Seldom has it been more apparent than Saturday. Auburn and Florida combined for 43 fouls and 29 turnovers, creating a slow and sloppy game that never developed much of a rhythm outside of a 14-0 Tigers run in the first half. It was the last thing a Gators squad that has struggled with maintaining intensity needed. In what most might have expected to be a fairly uneventful victory, Florida found itself in a slugfest.

UP NEXT: Florida travels to Tuscaloosa, Ala., Thursday at 7 p.m. to take on the Alabama Crimson Tide (8-9, 2-2 SEC).


Official Basketball Box Score
Florida vs Auburn
1/18/14 3:00 p.m. at Auburn Arena -- Auburn, Ala.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
VISITORS: Florida 15-2, 4-0
                          TOT-FG  3-PT         REBOUNDS
## Player Name            FG-FGA FG-FGA FT-FTA OF DE TOT PF  TP  A TO BLK S MIN
15 Yeguete, Will....... f  1-2    0-0    2-4    2  4  6   3   4  2  1  1  5  23
04 Young, Patric....... c  5-8    0-0    3-6    1  5  6   3  13  1  0  2  0  31
00 Hill, Kasey......... g  0-2    0-1    7-8    0  2  2   2   7  3  2  0  3  25
05 Wilbekin, Scottie... g  4-7    2-2    6-8    0  3  3   2  16  1  5  0  0  37
20 Frazier, Michael.... g  0-2    0-2    0-0    0  2  2   3   0  0  2  0  0  19
10 Finney-Smith, Dorian    3-6    1-2    0-0    1  2  3   2   7  1  2  0  1  20
24 Prather, Casey......    8-10   0-0    5-7    2  4  6   2  21  1  1  0  1  29
25 Walker, DeVon.......    0-2    0-2    0-0    0  1  1   1   0  0  0  0  0  11
30 Kurtz, Jacob........    0-0    0-0    0-0    0  0  0   0   0  1  1  0  1   5
42 Donovan, Billy......    0-0    0-0    0-0    0  0  0   0   0  0  0  0  0  0+
   TEAM................                         1  1  2
   Totals..............   21-39   3-9   23-33   7 24 31  18  68 10 14  3 11 200

TOTAL FG% 1st Half: 11-18 61.1%   2nd Half: 10-21 47.6%   Game: 53.8%  DEADB
3-Pt. FG% 1st Half:  1-5  20.0%   2nd Half:  2-4  50.0%   Game: 33.3%   REBS
F Throw % 1st Half: 10-13 76.9%   2nd Half: 13-20 65.0%   Game: 69.7%    4


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
HOME TEAM: Auburn 8-7, 0-4
                          TOT-FG  3-PT         REBOUNDS
## Player Name            FG-FGA FG-FGA FT-FTA OF DE TOT PF  TP  A TO BLK S MIN
02 Payne, Allen........ f  3-8    1-1    4-4    1  5  6   4  11  1  4  0  3  33
00 Dixon-Tatum, Asauhn. c  0-3    0-0    0-0    1  1  2   4   0  0  0  0  0  13
01 Harrell, KT......... g  5-13   4-7    4-7    0  0  0   2  18  3  4  1  2  38
03 Denson, Chris....... g  8-18   2-5    3-7    1  1  2   2  21  1  3  0  1  36
13 Shamsid-Deen, Tahj.. g  3-3    0-0    0-0    0  0  0   5   6  3  0  0  0  29
11 Wade, Dion..........    0-0    0-0    0-0    0  0  0   1   0  0  1  0  0   5
20 Thompson, Alex......    1-1    0-0    0-0    1  1  2   1   2  0  1  0  0   8
21 Canada, Malcolm.....    0-0    0-0    0-0    1  1  2   5   0  0  1  0  0  11
41 Atewe, Matthew......    0-0    0-0    3-4    0  5  5   1   3  2  1  1  1  27
   TEAM................                         2  2  4
   Totals..............   20-46   7-13  14-22   7 16 23  25  61 10 15  2  7 200

TOTAL FG% 1st Half:  9-20 45.0%   2nd Half: 11-26 42.3%   Game: 43.5%  DEADB
3-Pt. FG% 1st Half:  5-5  100 %   2nd Half:  2-8  25.0%   Game: 53.8%   REBS
F Throw % 1st Half:  9-11 81.8%   2nd Half:  5-11 45.5%   Game: 63.6%   3,1


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Officials: James Barker, Willi CJ Washington, Jeffery Clark
Technical fouls: Florida-None. Auburn-None.
Attendance: 8683
Score by Periods                1st  2nd   Total
Florida.......................   33   35  -   68
Auburn........................   32   29  -   61

Points in the paint-UF 32,AU 24. Points off turnovers-UF 13,AU 16.
2nd chance points-UF 6,AU 2. Fast break points-UF 2,AU 2.
Bench points-UF 28,AU 5. Score tied-5 times. Lead changed-6 times.
Last FG-UF 2nd-01:21, AU 2nd-01:59.
Largest lead-UF by 13 1st-08:48, AU by 2 1st-01:24.


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