Seminoles cool down Gators at home

Published: Thursday, November 21, 2013 at 10:00 p.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, November 21, 2013 at 10:24 p.m.

Some cold shooting as a team and a tough opponent were too much to overcome Thursday as Florida dropped a 76-68 decision to rival Florida State before an O'Connell Center crowd of 1,602.

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Florida sophomore January Miller led the Gators with 19 points, including four made 3-pointers, in Thursday's 76-68 loss to Florida State at home.

Brett Le Blanc / Correspondent / FILE

The Gators (3-2) got a strong performance from sophomore guard January Miller, who had a team-high 19 points on 7-of-10 shooting from the field, including 4-of-5 from 3-point range, but the rest of the team could not follow suit, combining to go 13-of-53 (24.5 percent) from the floor as FSU (4-0) won for fourth time in the last five meetings with UF.

“You have to give Florida State a lot of credit for coming in here and the way they played and how hard they played,” UF coach Amanda Butler said. “We basically in our eyes lost the toughness battle in parts of the game today. Not the entire game — there were definitely some bright spots.

“I think we played hard, but there's a difference between playing hard and playing tough, and we've just got to use these opportunities to grow and find ways to improve.”

The Seminoles, who placed four starters in double figures led by redshirt sophomore forward Morgan Jones' game-high 24 points, built an 11-point, first-half lead, 30-19, but the Gators fought back to close the half on a 10-4 run to go into the locker room only down five, 34-29.

FSU dominated the first 10 minutes after intermission to build a 58-42 lead, but again Florida fought back, closing to within 69-64 on an offensive rebound and putback by freshman Ronni Williams with 2:33 left

But Williams, who finished with a 14-point, 12-rebound double-double, fouled out for the fourth straight game shortly thereafter, and Jones hit 5-of-6 from the foul line in the last 48 seconds to seal the win for 'Noles, who shot 45.5 percent (25-of-55) from the field and 81.8 percent (18-of-22) from the charity stripe.

UF returns to action in the O'Dome Tuesday against St. John's at 7 p.m.

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