Gators get Gonzaga rematch in PK80

Florida's Deaundrae Ballard shoots over Stanford's Oscar Da Silva in the second half Thursday during the Phil Knight Invitational tournament in Portland, Ore. (AP Photo/Timothy J. Gonzalez)

No. 7 Florida will get its first test of the season against a ranked team when it faces No. 17 Gonzaga tonight in the PK80 Tournament motion bracket semifinals in Portland, Ore. The game will start at 11:30 p.m. and air on ESPN2.

The Gators (4-0) advanced by sinking 15 3-pointers in a 108-87 win over Stanford late Thursday night. Gonzaga (4-0) moved on with an 86-59 win over Ohio State. The Florida-Gonzaga matchup is a rematch of last season’s semifinals in the AdvoCare Classic at Disney’s Wide World of Sports Complex, which Gonzaga won 77-72.

Florida junior center Kevarrius Hayes is expected to return tonight after serving a one-game suspension for violation of team rules.

“It’s a next-guy-up mentality,” said Florida senior forward Egor Koulechov, who scored a team-high 26 points in the win over Stanford. “I think we did a good job today of rallying around each other and stepping up. Keith (Stone) had to move to the 5 and I had to move to the 4. You adjust throughout the game. Guys were hitting shots. I thought we were really unselfish. When you play like that, I think it really helps when you’re down a guy or two.”

Gonzaga returns two starters — forward Johnathan Williams and guard Josh Perkins — from a team that went 37-2 and reached the NCAA Finals last season.

Other Florida notes from last night’s Stanford win:

  • Chris Chiozza set a career high with 11 asssists and scored a season-high 14 points to notch a double-double.
  • Jalen Hudson picked up his first 4-point play as a Gator. It was UF’s second of the season, as Koulechov recorded one against UNF (11/16).
  • Coming off a 22-point second half last outing, Hudson posted 17 points in the first 13 minutes, giving him 39 points over a 33-minute span of game time.
  • Hudson and Koulechov each scored 17 in the first half as the Gators shot 13-for-18 (.722) from 3-point range in the first half. Koulechov hit all 5 of his attempts, while Hudson knocked down 4 of 6.
  • Keith Stone drew two charges and has a team-leading three drawn charges this season.


  1. Ok Kevin. Tonight is the first test. We are loaded with high percentage shooters. When Egbunu gets back – we’ll be a very complete team. I think shooting percentage wise – this team will ultimately be our best ever.