Florida Gators coach Todd Golden screams to a referee against the Georgia Bulldogs during the second half at Exactech Arena at the O'Connell Center. [ Matt Pendleton-USA TODAY Sports]

Florida Men’s Basketball Falls At South Carolina After Losing 10-Point Lead

The No. 24 Florida Gators men’s basketball team fell at the No. 18 South Carolina Gamecocks, 82-76, on Saturday afternoon.

It was a close matchup, with South Carolina trailing for the majority of the game. But, the Gamecocks managed to snatch back the lead in the last five minutes of play.

After a 3-pointer from Florida’s Walter Clayton Jr., the Gators (20-9, 10-6 SEC) were able to tie it at 74, but from there South Carolina (24-5, 12-4) continued on its groove and Florida was unable to recover.

Florida Goes On 14-0 Scoring Run

South Carolina Seals The Deal

Florida held the lead initially after the break and was up by 10 points (56-46) at the 12:29 mark until South Carolina applied defensive pressure to force turnovers. South Carolina switched to a 1-3-1 zone defense in the second half, slowing Florida’s efforts.

Meechie Johnson had a SEC career-high by putting up 25 points, 21 of which were made in the second half to help the Gamecocks toward the lead. Johnson put up a layup giving South Carolina the 65-63 lead.

With one minute remaining, the Gators were able to tie it at 74 after the 3-pointer from Clayton Jr.

Johnson responded with a 3-pointer of his own to move the Gamecocks to the lead that they needed to finish out the matchup.

What it Means

About Emma Pastis

Emma Pastis is an Orlando, FL native who is a second-year journalism student at the University of Florida.

Check Also

Florida Men’s Basketball: Additions, Possible Losses

There is good and possible bad news for Florida basketball fans this week. The Gators …