Michael Frazier II added 14 points, including four
3-pointers, for No. 1 seed Florida (32-2), which will enter the
NCAA tournament on a school-record 26-game winning streak. Casey
Prather and Scottie Wilbekin each added 11 points while Will
Yeguete grabbed a team-high seven rebounds for the top-ranked
Gators, who overcame 7-of-17 shooting from the free-throw line.
Aaron Harrison led the way with 16 points and James Young scored
13 for Kentucky (24-10), which shot 35.3 percent from the field.
Andrew Harrison netted 10 points while Willie Cauley-Stein
contributed 10 points, 11 rebounds and five blocks off the bench
for the second-seeded Wildcats, who finished 3-of-11 from
Chris Walker converted a three-point play to put Florida on top
35-21 and the Gators held Kentucky to 34.5 shooting in the first
half to take a 40-30 advantage at the break. Prather's driving
layup extended Florida's lead to 16 early in the second stanza
as the Gators began to pull away.
Aaron Harrison scored seven points during a 14-0 run to close
the gap to 54-53 before Wilbekin nailed a jumper to put Florida
up by six with 5:05 remaining. James Young hit a clutch triple
to pull the Wildcats within one with 1:30 left but Kentucky
could not take advantage of two late Florida misses from the
free throw line as Young slipped while trying to hoist up the
potential game-winning shot in the closing seconds.
GAME NOTEBOOK: Florida improved to 7-1 in games decided by five
points or fewer this season. … The Gators won their first SEC
tournament championship since 2007 … Kentucky finished 21-of-26
from the foul line.
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