Notebook: Record-setting day from arc


Published: Sunday, January 25, 2009 at 11:50 p.m.
Last Modified: Sunday, January 25, 2009 at 11:50 p.m.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Sometimes it’s hard to explain the unexpected.

With many of the same players a season ago, Florida came to Memorial Gym and shot 1-for-15 from 3-point range in a 61-58 loss to Vanderbilt.

On Sunday afternoon, the Gators couldn’t miss. Florida rode a school-record 12 3-pointers in the first half and went 15-for-25 from 3-point range for the game to overwhelm the Commodores 94-69.

“We just caught fire,” Florida coach Billy Donovan said.

Vanderbilt came into the game with a plan to stop leading scorer Nick Calathes with frequent double-teams at the top of the key. That opened the floor up for the rest of Florida’s shooters. The Commodores didn’t count on Florida sophomore Chandler Parsons, a 26.8 percent 3-point shooter coming into the game, to make his first five 3-point attempts.

Freshman Erving Walker also provided an early boost, making three of his four 3-point attempts. Senior Walter Hodge went two-for-three from 3-point range and Calathes went 2-for-4 from 3-point range.

“Before you know it, guys started making shots from different positions,” Donovan said. “I think for any team, when you are making shots, it changes the complexion of your team.”

Vanderbilt came into the game allowing teams to shoot just 33.7 percent from 3-point range.

“Teams make runs, but half the shots they made were wide open,” Vanderbilt junior guard Jermaine Beal said.

“Whenever you get some players hot, it’s hard to stop them. We had some wrong assignments and let some guys open, and those players made shots.”

Calathes sank Florida’s record 12th 3-pointer of the first half at the buzzer, eclipsing the previous record of 11 set twice (Feb. 24, 1999 against South Carolina and Feb. 3, 1997 against Jacksonville.)

Florida’s 15 3-pointers topples its previous season-high of 14 last Nov. 16 against Bradley. Florida also came within one 3-pointer of matching the Memorial Gym record of 16 in a game. Vanderbilt holds the gym record, making 16 3-pointers against both South Carolina (Jan. 8, 1994) and Arkansas (Feb. 11, 1995.)

FTs on target

Lost in Florida’s record-setting day from the perimeter was the fact that the Gators also had its best day from the free-throw line in Southeastern Conference play.

The Gators made their first nine free-throw attempts and wound up 9-for-10 from the line in the game. Florida could have been perfect had freshman Erving Walker not missed the front-end of a one-and-one with 1:12 left.

“I think we understand now how important free throws are,” Calathes said.

Ogilvy hurting

Vanderbilt sophomore center A.J. Ogilvy, a preseason All-SEC first-teamer, played just one minute in the second half and ended up with four points and two rebounds.

The 6-foot-11 Ogilvy has been dealing with plantar fasciitis issues on an off throughout the season. The foot ailment has limited his effectiveness getting up and down the court in transition.“Ogilvy was not himself,” Donovan said.

“I know he has been dealing with some things health-wise. It’s hard when your best player is going through some physical ailments. He is an experienced, veteran guy. You could tell something was wrong with him.”

Etc.

Florida athletic director Jeremy Foley made the trip with associate athletic directors Greg McGarity and Mike Hill. ... Florida’s 25-point win against Vanderbilt was its most lopsided against an SEC opponent since beating Auburn 91-66 on Jan. 27, 2007. ... Donovan said after the game he doesn’t expect sophomore guard Adam Allen (knee) to return this season, “He could be cleared to practice the second week in February but as far as playing in any games, not a chance,” Donovan said.

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