Three observations following Florida’s 77-72 loss to South Carolina at the O’Connell Center.
— Though the Gators outscored South Carolina 28-20 in the paint, Florida missed some early finishes around the basket that proved costly late — including layups by Kevarrius Hayes and KeVaughn Allen and a short hook from Gorjok Gak that spinned out. Credit redshirt freshman forward Dontay Bassett, though, for stepping up inside with 9 points, 1 rebound and 1 blocked shot. Bassett has been playing better in practice lately and will continue to be needed off the bench until senior center John Egbunu returns.
— It was an up-and-down game for junior guard KeVaughn Allen, who needed 15 shots to get to 15 points and also had four of UF’s 12 turnovers. The 6-foot-2 Allen is getting better looks with the emergence of Jalen Hudson and Egor Koulechov on the perimeter and is taking more shots, but is 9 of 29 over his last two games. Simply put, Allen needs to make shots at a higher percentage in order for Florida to become a more dynamic offense.
— White said the reason why junior forward Keith Stone wasn’t more of a factor against South Carolina was due to the scouting report. “That’s on me,” White said. “He had only one post touch. Our plan was to attack South Carolina from the perimeter.” Still, Stone could have been a little more active on the glass in an effort to generate his own offense. In 22 minutes, the 6-8 Stone had just 2 points and 2 rebounds, both defensive, while going 1 of 3 from the floor and 0 of 2 from 3-point range.