Florida basketball score vs. Butler: Gators look hapless in loss to end Battle 4 Atlantis

By Adam Silverstein
November 23, 2018
Florida basketball score vs. Butler: Gators look hapless in loss to end Battle 4 Atlantis

Image Credit: UAA Communications

The Florida Gators‘ third game in the Bahamas looked a lot like their first — but worse — as they again went ice cold from the field in a 60-54 loss to the Butler Bulldogs to conclude the 2018 Battle 4 Atlantis tournament on Friday night. Florida (3-3) was unable to find the bottom of the net in the second half as it fell to 1-2 at the event and .500 on the season.

It’s too early to close the door on the Gators for the entire 2018-19 season, but without a legitimate turnaround at some point before the SEC slate begins in the new year, it’s going to be difficult to buy into this team going forward. Let’s take a look at what went down in the third loss of the season.

It was over when … the second half started the same as the first. Florida opened both halves with identical shooting numbers (5 for 15), and had it not been for a flurry of scoring to close the first 20 minutes, the Gators would have been down by double digits throughout most of the game. UF shot 8 of 28 from the field (.286) and 1 for 12 from three (.083) in the second half with its two most experienced players completely failing to be effective scorers in the game. Redshirt senior guard Jalen Hudson and senior G KeVaughn Allen each went 1 for 5 from the field and 0 for 3 from downtown, combining to score five points. Hudson played just 14 minutes as he came off the bench for the second straight game, while Allen was mostly ineffective in 29 minutes.

Exceptional efforts: Freshman point guard Andrew Nembhard was solid with 11 points on 4 off 6 shooting, hitting 3 of 4 triples in the game. The problem? All of those points came in the first half. Nembhard was held scoreless in the second half and contributed just two assists after dropping five dimes in the opening 20 minutes. Sophomore G Deaundrare Ballard, who got busted open at the end of the first half, matched Nembhard with 11 points on 3-of-6 shooting from deep.

Odds and ends: In addition to its poor shooting from the field (.346) and beyond the arc (.296), UF made just 10 of 16 free throws (.625) … the Gators saw 21 of their 54 points come from the bench but got outscored in the paint by eight … Florida was not especially sloppy with the ball and did not get beat badly on the boards (35-33) but simply could not put the ball in the hoop, making just one of its last seven shots in the game … UF will host Butler on Saturday, Dec. 29 in Gainesville, Florida

What it means: Well, it’s not good. The Gators looked lost in the Bahamas, and after it appeared they were ready to bounce back with a strong showing against Stanford, they simply folded against the Bulldogs. Florida and head coach Mike White have a lot of questions to answer as this team looks like a shell of the units that have been fielded over the last few years by White.

Up next: Florida gets the opportunity to make some adjustments at home when it hosts North Florida on Tuesday. It is the Gators’ only game for the next 11 days as they do not otherwise play again until taking on West Virginia in the 2018 Jimmy V. Classic on Dec. 2.


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