Gators rally past 'Noles, 72-62

Published: Tuesday, January 3, 2006 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Monday, January 2, 2006 at 11:43 p.m.
Whenever Florida and Florida State face off, no extra motivation is necessary. But the UF women's basketball team had a little more incentive than usual to beat its in-state rivals.
Coming into Monday's game at the O'Connell Center, Florida had only lost one game all season - to Florida State. The game was also the last non-conference contest for the Gators.
Florida started slow but rallied in the second half in the 72-62 win over the Seminoles.
"I think it was another tough in-state rival game, very similar to the one we had up in Tallahassee," UF coach Carolyn Peck said.
Senior forward Brittany Davis led the team with 16 points, but two reserves - sophomore Depree Bowden and freshman Marshae Dotson - recorded career-highs with 15 and 14 points, respectively. Freshman Sha Brooks, who was named SEC player of the week Monday, added 13 points.
"It was a well-fought game," Peck said. "I've got to compliment our team, but more importantly, our bench."
Dotson scored eight first-half points after starting forward Dalila Eshe was saddled with two early fouls. Dotson's output kept the game close when UF was struggling.
"We had to step up," Dotson said. "Coach just wanted a lot of energy off the bench, and that's what we had to do."
Florida trailed most of the first half and was down by 11 with 15:15 to play. The Gators then went on a 15-0 run over the next 6:48, and never relinquished the lead.
Perhaps the most significant difference between November's 82-76 loss in Tallahassee and Monday's victory was the number of turnovers committed by the Seminoles. In the first contest, FSU committed only 15 turnovers. In this game Florida State turned the ball over 25 times.
"That's just uncharacteristic. We don't turn it over like this," Seminole coach Sue Semrau said. "Credit Florida for the pressure that they put on us."
Florida will host Alabama on Thursday night at 7 p.m. to open Southeastern Conference play.

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