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Gators Defeat Mercer 71-50

Christmas came early for the Gator women’s basketball team as they took down the Mercer Bears 71-50 after losing to the Bears last season 92-82.

The Gators have won their seventh game on the 2019-20 season making them 7-3. This is a huge improvement from last season when in their first 10 games, Florida went 3-7.

One thing remained consistent for Florida throughout the game. The three’s were flying tonight for the Gators going 10-31 from behind the arc.

Recap

First Half

Mercer got off to a quick start, capitalizing on three Gator turnovers in the first few minutes of the game. to take a 4-0 lead. Kristina Moore kept the score from getting too out of hand with two three’s.

After a rough start, Florida still had eight turnovers late in the first quarter, but had found an offensive rhythm and led 20-10 with just over a minute left in the quarter.

The Gators knocked down 50% of their three’s in the first quarter, which accounted for half of their 24 first-quarter points.

Turnovers were on neither team’s side and halfway through the second quarter, the Bears had eight turnovers and the Gators had ten.

At the half, nine out of the seven Gator players who had seen the court have scored. The offensive rhythm also continued for the Gators in the second half and scored 20 points to Mercer’s 12. This put Florida up by 18 to make the halftime score 44-26.

Second Half

The third quarter got off to a slow start for both teams until Kiki Smith drained a three and three free throws.

https://twitter.com/GatorsWBK/status/1207106532137062400

While scoring was not bad for the Gators in the third quarter, with 16 points, their defense dwindled and allowed Mercer to also score 16 points. Mercer even outshot Florida in the third shooting 40% from the floor to Florida’s 33.3%.

However, the damage was already done for the Bears, and Florida still led by 18 at the end of the third.

The fourth quarter started fast with a quick layup from Smith to put the Gators back up by 20. Mercer started the final quarter a little differently going 1-8 in the first five minutes.

Neither team rounded out the fourth with their best gameplay. Florida went for just 4-19 and Mercer finished the quarter going 3-16.

Impact Players

https://twitter.com/GatorsWBK/status/1207113692912836609

Kiki Smith scored big for the gators today scoring 21 points and 10 rebounds for her second career double-double. Lavender Briggs also pulled out a double-double for the Gators scoring 10 points and 11 rebounds.

Kristina Moore started off hot for the Gators but did end up in early foul trouble which limited her first half gameplay. Starting up the second, Moore received two more fouls that would keep her out of the game.

Coming Up Next

Looking ahead, the Gators will move on to play Xavier and Wake Forest in the West Palm Invitational. These games will be on Dec. 20 and 21 respectively.

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