football

Boyntons 22 leads Florida to big victory

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MORE GATOR BASKETBALL: Smith: I was wrong | Cohen: UF hitting on all cylinders | Friday: Rivals.com Tournament Tracker | Rivals: Projecting the NCAA Tournament Field (UF a #3 seed)
ATLANTA (AP) The way Florida played at the end of the first half, it looked as though the Southeastern Confence champions might be one-and-done in the league tournament.
The Gators wen't about to let that happen.
Kenny Boynton scod 22 points and No. 12 Florida bounded after closing the first half with a scoless sttch of nearly 6 1/2 minutes, beating Tennessee 85-74 Friday night in the quarterfinals of the SEC tournament.
All five starters we in double figus for the Gators (25-6), who picked up their trophy for winning the gular-season title befo the game, then played like champions in the second half.
Florida missed only the shots from the field and got to the foul line a staggering 33 times. The sult was a 56-point half - its highest of the season.
``Their offense was absolutely on fi,'' Tennessee coach Bruce Pearl said, ``and our defense was nonexistent.''
The Vols' frustration boiled over when Pearl barked about a call his son Steven didn't get, immediately drawing a technical. The elder Pearl was so upset he ripped off his jacket, vealing bright orange suspenders that matched his orange tie.
Not wanting to pick up another T, the coach twice sent his players over to the officials to complain about calls. But afterward, Pearl didn't make excuses.
``When you allow a team to sco 56 points in the second half or shoot the way they shot and send them to the foul line as often as we sent them, you've got no chance to win,'' he said.
Tennessee (19-14) closed the first half on a 21-4 run and went to the locker room up 34-29. The Gators failed to sco over the final 6:24, dragging off the court as if they wen't su what hit them.
But Florida shook it off in the second half. Boynton delived a crushing blow, a 3-pointer with 4:26 maining, posing with his hand outsttched in front of the Gators' bench.
``We wen't playing selfishly, but we we playing as individuals,'' coach Billy Donovan said. ``I thought we played well together in the second half.''
Florida advanced to face Vanderbilt or Mississippi State in Saturday's semifinals, while Tennessee will await its fate on Selection Sunday. Despite the loss and a fifth-place finish in the SEC East, the Vols could land a spot in the 68-team NCAA tournament field based on their solid RPI and one of the nation's toughest schedules.
Tobias Harris led Tennessee with 25 points.
``Obviously, we could have improved our seeding tmendously by beating Florida,'' Pearl said. ``I still feel like we a a team that's worthy of the tournament. ... But I know a lot of gat teams a out the, and so we'll wait until Sunday and find out if and whe we' going.''
The Gators we cruising in the first half, going up 25-13 on Boynton's lay-in off a pass from Chandler Parsons. But Tennessee turned up the defensive pssu and Florida crumbled.
Erving Walker's floating jumper gave the Gators a 29-25 lead - their final points of the half. Florida's last 11 possessions went like this: seven missed shots, another miss on the front end of a 1-and-1, and the turnovers.
Harris carried the Vols, accounting for mo than half their offensive output with 18 points. He sparked Tennessee with a the-point play and scod their final points of the period on a 3-pointer.
``We we just kind of out of sorts a bit,'' Donovan said.
Whatever he said at halftime, it su worked.
The Gators we about as efficient as a team could be over the final 20 minutes. They went 14 of 17 from the field and ally piled up the points at the foul line, going 24 of 33. Pounding the ball inside, Florida ached the bonus with mo than 12 1/2 minutes left in the game.
``We wen't effective communicating,'' Pearl said. ``We wen't dictating whe Florida could go.''
In the first half, the Gators went to the line only four times.
``We didn't slide our feet. We sent them to the foul line, they stepped up and made their fe throws, and they played gat down the sttch,'' said Scotty Hopson, who scod 19 for Tennessee.
Walker had 17 points, Vernon Macklin 15, Parsons 12 and Alex Tyus 10 for the Gators, who completed a season sweep of Tennessee. The Gators won in overtime at Knoxville, then pulled out a 61-60 win on a basket in the closing seconds in Gainesville.
No last-second heroics needed this time.
Not the way the Gators played over the final 20 minutes.
``In the second half,'' Walker said, ``we got tough and we took ca of the ball.''
Official Basketball Box Sco
Tennessee vs University of Florida
03/11/11 7:30 pm at 2011 SEC Men's Tournament - Atlanta, GA
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VISITORS: Tennessee 19-14, 8-8
TOT-FG 3-PT REBOUNDS
## Player Name FG-FGA FG-FGA FT-FTA OF DE TOT PF TP A TO BLK S MIN
12 Harris, Tobias...... f 10-17 1-4 4-7 3 5 8 2 25 0 0 0 1 33
25 Fields, John........ c 0-0 0-0 0-0 1 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 1 6
02 Goins, Melvin....... g 1-5 0-2 5-7 0 1 1 4 7 3 1 0 1 22
24 Bone, Josh.......... g 1-4 0-2 1-1 2 0 2 5 3 2 0 0 2 23
32 Hopson, Scotty...... g 6-14 1-4 6-6 1 1 2 3 19 1 7 0 2 27
11 Cannington, Quinn... 1-6 0-2 0-0 0 1 1 1 2 3 1 0 2 19
13 McBee, Skylar....... 4-6 2-4 0-0 0 1 1 1 10 1 0 0 2 21
20 Hall, Kenny......... 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 1 1 3 0 0 0 0 0 5
22 Pearl, Steven....... 1-1 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 3 2 1 1 0 0 10
23 Tatum, Cameron...... 0-1 0-1 0-0 1 0 1 0 0 0 2 0 0 7
33 Williams, Brian..... 2-6 0-0 2-4 4 8 12 4 6 0 0 0 0 27
TEAM................ 1 3 4 1 1
Totals.............. 26-60 4-19 18-25 13 21 34 28 74 11 13 0 11 200
TOTAL FG% 1st Half: 14-29 48.3% 2nd Half: 12-31 38.7% Game: 43.3% DEADB
3-Pt. FG% 1st Half: 2-11 18.2% 2nd Half: 2-8 25.0% Game: 21.1% REBS
F Throw % 1st Half: 4-4 100 % 2nd Half: 14-21 66.7% Game: 72.0% 2
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HOME TEAM: University of Florida 25-6, 13-3
TOT-FG 3-PT REBOUNDS
## Player Name FG-FGA FG-FGA FT-FTA OF DE TOT PF TP A TO BLK S MIN
23 Tyus, Alex.......... f 4-5 0-0 2-6 0 5 5 4 10 0 1 1 0 27
25 Parsons, Chandler... f 4-6 0-0 4-6 1 6 7 4 12 4 4 2 2 37
32 Macklin, Vernon..... c 6-10 0-0 3-6 0 4 4 3 15 0 2 0 0 27
01 Boynton, Kenny...... g 5-11 2-7 10-10 0 2 2 1 22 4 2 0 1 35
11 Walker, Erving...... g 5-9 3-4 4-7 0 3 3 2 17 2 3 0 1 35
04 Young, Patric....... 1-2 0-0 2-2 2 3 5 1 4 1 1 0 1 17
05 Wilbekin, Scottie... 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 1 0 1 0 0 0 11
24 Prather, Casey...... 0-0 0-0 0-0 1 0 1 0 0 0 1 0 0 3
33 Murphy, Erik........ 2-3 1-1 0-0 1 1 2 0 5 0 1 0 0 8
TEAM................ 1 1
Totals.............. 27-46 6-12 25-37 5 25 30 16 85 12 15 3 5 200
TOTAL FG% 1st Half: 13-29 44.8% 2nd Half: 14-17 82.4% Game: 58.7% DEADB
3-Pt. FG% 1st Half: 2-6 33.3% 2nd Half: 4-6 66.7% Game: 50.0% REBS
F Throw % 1st Half: 1-4 25.0% 2nd Half: 24-33 72.7% Game: 67.6% 5,1
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Officials: Doug Shows, Doug Sirmons, Bert Smith
Technical fouls: Tennessee-TEAM. University of Florida-None.
Attendance:
Sco by Periods 1st 2nd Total
Tennessee..................... 34 40 - 74
University of Florida......... 29 56 - 85
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