Florida basketball score, takeaways: Gators run through Oregon State in bounce-back win

By OnlyGators.com Staff
November 25, 2022
Florida basketball score, takeaways: Gators run through Oregon State in bounce-back win

Image Credit: UAA

Florida Gators basketball exorcised the demons encountered in a seriously disappointing Thanksgiving performance just over 24 hours later with a thorough 81-68 beatdown of the Oregon State Beavers on Black Friday. With the victory, Florida improved to 1-1 in the 2022 Phil Knight Legacy and now has an opportunity to play for fifth place in the tournament on Sunday.

The Gators dominated from the opening whistle, and aside form a third straight stretch of poor play to close the first half, never relented. They scored efficiently, rebounded consistently and kept one of the worst Power Five teams in the nation at arm’s length for the duration of the contest.

Given the quick turnaround to the Florida-Florida State football game Friday night, let’s take a quick look at the Gators’ victory with some Fastbreak Takeaways.

It was over when … sophomore forward Alex Fudge drained a 3-pointer to ensure a miraculous comeback would not occur, putting the Gators back ahead 16 points with 48 seconds to play. As it had the prior three halves, Florida saw its opponent make a run to close the period. Oregon State went on an extended 13-5 scoring stretch to cut UF’s advantage to 11 with 1:34 to play. This after the Gators led by as many as 21 points in the second half and 19 points with 4:47 to play.

First half focus: Florida opened scoring at a torrid pace, taking an early 22-4 lead and extending that advantage to 34-11 on the back of a 12-2 run with four consecutive 3-pointers as 7:13 remained until the break. However, the Gators gave the Beavers life over the final 4:25 as they allowed three straight triples as part of a 17-6 closing stretch that cut UF’s advantage down from 23 to 13 entering halftime.

Exceptional efforts: Junior guard Trey Bonham got it done in both halves for the Gators, scoring a game-high 19 points on 7 of 12 shooting while making 3 of 6 attempts from downtown. Redshirt senior F Colin Castleton rebounded a bit with 12 points, six boards and four assists, though he was not as much a focus of the offense as he had been through the first two weeks of the season. Sophomore F Will Richard continued his consistent ways with 13 points on 2 of 3 shooting from long range with five rebounds. Freshman G Riley Kugel continues to shine on the offensive end; he scored 10 points on 4 of 7 shooting and now has 22 points on 52% shooting across the last two games.

Odds and ends: Sophomore G Kowacie Reeves got his first minutes in the opening period after sitting for Florida’s last three halves and played 8 minutes in total; it was declared a coach’s decision that was not disciplinary in nature. … redshirt senior G Myreon Jones made his first 3-pointer of the season after starting 0 for 8 through the first five games … Florida led for 39:23 of the 40-minute game … the Gators and Beavers met on the hardwood for the first time … UF is now 16-10 all-time against the Pac-12

What it means: The Gators picked up a nice bounce-back win against a Beavers team it was supposed to beat as handily as it did. Florida (40th) entered ranked 185 spots higher than Oregon State (225th) in KenPom and proved to be the far superior team. Should the expected team win its game to face UF in its next matchup, the Gators would have an opportunity to evaluate themselves against a similarly rated opponent.

What’s next? Florida will play either West Virginia or Portland State in the 5th Place game at the 2022 Phil Knight Legacy on Sunday. The tip-off time and network assignment have yet to be determined.

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