Florida, sans Parsons, tops LSU 68-61 on road

The crowd was sparse Sunday at the Pete Maravich Assembly Center in Baton Rouge, LA, but the No. 14/15 Florida Gators effort without senior forward Chandler Parsons (deep thigh bruise) was not. Missing their best player, Florida (21-5, 10-2 SEC) still rolled to a 68-61 victory over the LSU Tigers (10-17, 2-10 SEC) behind 17 points each from junior point guard Erving Walker and sophomore guard Kenny Boynton.

Leading 40-25 at the break, the Gators allowed the Tigers to get within six midway through the second half but held on to their lead due to a superior effort by the backcourt at the charity stripe over the final few minutes.

Florida opened up the first half with a 10-0 run and utilized an 8-2 run later in the period to go up a game-high 15 points, 36-21, with 4:20 to go before the break. A layup by redshirt senior center Vernon Macklin allowed UF to close the half with the same 15-point advantage; they shot 59.4 percent from the field as a team while holding LSU to only 34.4 percent shooting.

The Tigers fought back with a 9-2 run to open the second half and cut the Gators’ lead to 42-34. A three-pointer by Walker put Florida back ahead 15 with 12:59 left, but LSU responded with an impressive 17-7 run to reduce their deficit from 15 to six with 4:41 remaining in the game and UF on their heels.

Boynton ended the Tigers’ run and a 5:51 scoring drought for the Gators on a fastbreak layup with 3:10 remaining.

Florida, which was only 6-for-12 from the free throw line and saw three consecutive frontcourt players miss the front end of one-and-ones in the second half, hit eight-straight free throws to end the game thanks to the backcourt of Walker (four), Boynton (two) and freshman PG Scottie Wilbekin (two).

LSU G Ralston Turner posted a game-high 18 points but was the only player on his team to score in double figures.

Three of UF’s starters hit that mark with Macklin adding 16 points and seven rebounds to Walker and Boynton’s respective 17-point performances.

Walker went 5-for-10 (3-of-6 from downtown) while also hitting four free throws and tying Matt Walsh for sixth all-time on the school’s career three-pointers list. Boynton was 5-of-12 (1-for-5 from three, 6-for-7 from the line) and also grabbed two steals.

Senior F Alex Tyus picked up nine boards while also scoring six points. Freshman F Casey Prather, who started in place of Parsons, was held scoreless in only 15 minutes of action. Wilbekin ended up playing the majority of Parsons’s minutes.

With the victory, the Gators have won 10 conference games for the first time since 2007. Florida improved to 18-1 when holding an opponent under 70 points this season and 12-0 when forcing more turnovers; they have now won 16 of their last 19 games. The Gators’ defeat of the Tigers was their first in Baton Rouge since Jan. 28, 2003 and just their fourth win in the last 10 total games in the series.

Florida hosts Georgia on Thursday for the second meeting between the teams this season. UF beat UGA 104-91 in double overtime on Jan. 25.

Photo Credit: Patrick Semansky/Associated Press

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16 Responses to “Florida, sans Parsons, tops LSU 68-61 on road”

  1. Gatorbuc15 says:

    Good road win.

  2. Tractorr says:

    Good win, finally the boys aren’t overlooking teams that they should beat.

    Any news on Parsons? I didn’t think his injury was supposed to be that bad and then the commentators did a good job scaring me during the game.

    • Gatorgrad79 says:

      Any very deep tissue bruise (bleeding in the tissue) has the potential for releasing clots – breaking up the clots to speed reabsorpton of the blood by the body is potentially tricky and requires constant monitoring and know how. That is why immediate icing and minimizing of the bleeding/bruising is important to prevent a prolonged recovery. I suspect had the trainers known how deep the injury, they would have considered pulling him and put him in the ice bath during the game, but the only immediate measure of the severity is how the athlete feels – is he in too much pain to function or not. Since Parsons gutted it out, it was not until afterwards that it was known how much bruisng deep in the tissue had occurred (apparently by some reports “a pooling of blood”, which is never good and raises concerns about clots being released.

  3. Gatorgrad79 says:

    Now for a beatdown of the dawgs at home…!!

  4. jay d says:

    solid road win…the first half showed how superior we are when doing what we need to on the court….the second half showed how dissfunctional we can be when players arnt doing their jobs….//// as each game comes to an end my theory of alex tyus being complete garbage on the court holds true….if he didn’t worry about his stats so much and focus on helping the players around him…..maybe,just maybe the stats would come to him….think I’m just being a heartless fan….focus on his play next game and then get back to me……keep up the intensity gators …we got a pissed off georgia team on the way!!

    • Tractorr says:

      I agree with you about Tyus spending too much time worrying about his stats, but he did lead the team in rebounds.

      • Gatorgrad79 says:

        Tyus is a frustrating chronic underachiever.

        • Tractorr says:

          The funny thing about Tyus is that he actually played better when he played out of position as a center. Sure he was overpowered by bigger stronger player but he actually looked like a better ball player. It really does seem like his head just isn’t in the game. There have been so many loose balls that are headed right at him and he just won’t grab them. Instead he knocks the ball to the other team. This is not even a talent issue. I could grab a ball that is coming right at me.

  5. FLA_GATORZ says:

    good road win!!!

  6. Mr2Bits says:

    Great win, just a little uneasy watching us go 6 minutes without a basket and lose a 15 point lead. Better teams would make us pay for dry runs like that. We also need to sharpen up the free throws and I can’t even count how many front ends of 1/1 we missed.

  7. John S says:

    Missing the front ends of the one and ones was scary, but this team held out even with LSU draining almost 4 threes in a row. This set up well for an upset w/o Parsons on the road, but this team proved again that they’re solid and balanced. Great job, Go Gators.

  8. Ken says:

    I am really surprised mroe teams aren’t playing zone against us. We seem to have little answer for the zone with our poor outside shooting. Good win, but missing the front end of 4 1-1s and as soon as team went into zone all offensive rhythm stopped was tough to watch. Granted there were a whole lot of dunks in 2nd half when they did get in the pain that just didn’t go down

    • Drew 4 Orange & Blue says:

      Ken – I had brought up FT’s and 3 Point shooting a couple of weeks ago in a home game where I was surprised to hear Vitale calling Boyton a poor outside shooter but the stats back him up…he is shooting 29.5% from 3′s but he has the most attempts on the team…he is clearly best when driving the ball and it would be nice to see him taking less and less 3′s…the other concern is 84% of our 3′s are by by Walker, Boyton & Parsons….I am not sure I remember a recent UF team that didn’t spread the attempts around more…maybe that’s because Murphy is about the only 4-5 on the team that can shoot outside which is rare for a Billy coached team…I’d also like to see Wilbekin getting more minutes as he has a 2.3 assists to turnover ratio and actually has more steals that turnovers and is probably our best on ball defender

  9. Zooker says:

    Besides Werner, Tyus is the worst starter under Billy D since Bonell Colas. Werner was not a starter in my opinion, he was just out there, why? I don’t know…

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