Gator Hoops Finish 1-2 In Phil Knight Tournament After Blow Out Loss To West Virginia

In the final game of the Phil Knight Legacy Tournament, the Florida Gators (4-3 ) lost to the West Virginia Mountaineers (6-1), 84-55. The Gators closed the tournament, winning only one of their three total games. They’ll head back to Gainesville and have a few days until their next match up on Wednesday.

Mountaineers Blowout Gators

The Gators started the game slow, going down by double digits and shooting 25% from beyond the arc. Although they cut the deficit down to single digits at the half, the Mountaineers came out of halftime ready to play. They went on a 25-7 run to open the half and fully took control of the game. They went up by as much as 30 points.

Something to note is the big man Colin Castleton finished the game with only three points as he was in foul trouble for most of the game.  Florida is relying on him to be the focal point of the offense and his being out of the lineup certainly hurt the Gators on both ends of the floor.  Kyle Lofton though led the Gators with 17 points and four assists.

Phil Knight Legacy Tournament Recap

Of the three games played, Florida managed to have a dominant win, a hard-fought loss, and a complete blowout. They showed flashes of a promising season specifically in the Oregon State game. The offense was fluid and the defense made it hard for the Beavers to get up open shots.

However, there were many points where you could see that adjustments must be made. With a team under a new coaching staff, mistakes are expected. It will be key to see how coach Todd Golden is able to bring this team together and bounce back. The Gators have another month of non-conference play until the SEC competition begins at the end of the year.

What’s next for the Gators?

The Gators men’s basketball team will have a few days of rest after their holiday tournament. They return to action on Wednesday to host FAMU. They’ll look to get their first home victory since their shocking loss to FAU.

About Daniel Haviv

Hello, my name is Daniel Haviv and I'm a junior sports journalism student at the University of Florida. As a sports writer, I have published content on a multitude of different sports across all levels. Additionally, I was a beat reporter for the Gators Men's Basketball team for the 2022-2023 season. Game-day previews and post-game articles are featured.

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