Young’s effort, Prather’s energy fueled Florida

If there is one area of concern for the No. 6/7 Florida Gators at this point, it is the team’s severe lack of depth in the frontcourt now that junior forward Will Yegeute (knee) is out for at least the duration of the regular season after undergoing arthroscopic surgery last Friday.

That issue moved to the forefront on Tuesday night when, early in what was ultimately a big 69-52 victory over the Kentucky Wildcats, junior center Patric Young picked up a foul 1:38 into the game and senior F Erik Murphy was sent to the bench after being called for two with 8:06 left in the first half.

Last year, Florida getting in early foul trouble might have been an issue the team would struggle rebounding from against an opponent with the length and post presence that Kentucky possesses. However, a pair of outstanding performances from Young and junior F Casey Prather ensured that Yeguete’s absence and Murphy’s move to the bench in the first half were not hindrances to the team.

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No. 6/7 Florida clobbers No. 25 Kentucky 69-52

The No. 6/7 Florida Gators (20-3, 10-1 SEC) loudly answered many of their critics on Tuesday evening with a sound and complete 69-52 takedown of the No. 25 Kentucky Wildcats (17-7, 8-3 SEC) at the Stephen C. O’Connell Center in Gainesville, FL.

Florida, which was 1-7 in its last eight games against Kentucky heading into Tuesday night’s contest, earned its first victory over its rivals since Feb. 5, 2011 to remain undefeated at home this season (12-0) and end the visitors’ five-game winning streak. The 17-point margin of victory over UK was the second-largest in program history and most for UF since it earned a 70-53 win on March 13, 2005.

The Gators also took a two-game lead in the Southeastern Conference standings and improved to 4-1 against top-25 opponents during the 2012-13 campaign.

UF was led by stellar performances from its junior class including great showings by point guard Scottie Wilbekin, center Patric Young and forward Casey Prather. Wilbekin registered game-highs of 14 points and eight assists, Young posted a double-double of 12 points and a game-high 11 rebounds, and Prather scored 12 points. All three gave superb efforts on the defensive end as well.

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