Gator Sportshop
Gator Ticket Office

Women's Basketball Headline

Kayla Lewis collected a team-best 10 rebounds with eight points.

Sunday January 27, 2013Florida Falls at No. 14 Georgia, 69-52

Athens, GA

Kayla Lewis collected a team-best 10 rebounds with eight points.

Each of Florida’s first six games in Southeastern Conference action were decided by eight points or less, but the Gators were unable to continue that trend against No. 14 Georgia, which used three significant runs to post a 69-52 win at Stegeman Coliseum on Sunday afternoon.

 

The Lady Bulldogs’ (17-3, 5-2 SEC) first spurt of 10 straight points came early in the game when the hosts built a double-digit lead. The teams then battled back and forth and Florida couldn’t make up any ground, as Georgia closed the half with a 15-6 run and held a commanding 39-20 halftime lead.

 

As the Gators were able to regroup and shave a 22-point deficit to 16 points early in the second half, Georgia countered with a devastating 17-2 march over an 8:38 span and Florida (13-8, 2-5 SEC) wasn’t able to recover, dropping its fourth consecutive game.

 

“We have to regroup,”  UF head coach Amanda Butler said. “It stinks. It feels bad to have lost four in a row, but again we have a really, really tough league and if you cry too long you’re going to lose five. So we have to get it back together, get our heads screwed on right and play with more overall determination, when we did that things went our way. When we let our foot off of the gas, certainly Georgia took good advantage of that.”

 

For the ninth game this year, every Gator who suited up scored, with Jennifer George (Fresno, Calif.), January Miller (Orlando, Fla.), Kayla Lewis (Decatur, Ga.) and Sydney Moss (Union, Ky.) each netting eight points.

 

Lewis, one of two Georgia-natives on the Gator squad, collected a team-best 10 rebounds for Florida, which also dropped the rebounding battle, 44-40, for the third straight game.

 

Freshman Christin Mercer, who is a native of nearby Douglasville, recorded five points with a career-high seven rebounds with two blocks in front of several family and friends.

 

Florida host 34.3 percent (22-64) in the game, including just 3-of-16 from the three-point arc and 5-of-14 from the free throw line. Georgia converted 43.1 percent (25-58) from the floor, with 4-of-15 from the arc and 15-of-21 from the stripe, while scoring 35 points in the paint.

 

“I thought we did a really poor job of executing and Georgia’s a tough team to play, especially when they’re coming off of their bye week. They really used their bye week well, obviously,” Butler said. “They came out ready to play. We struggled offensively. We’re still trying to get back in the groove and get Jennifer (George) in her regular minutes and feeling comfortable and confident. We’re forcing a lot of shots. The three-point line is not very kind to us right now. We’ve got to knock down those open looks. We have to win the rebounding battle when you’re not hitting shots.”

 

The game opened with fast-paced scoring for both teams, with George, who is still working her way back into the lineup after a shoulder injury either limited her minutes or held her out of the last four games, accounting for Florida’s first four points of the game, as she tied the score just over two minutes into the contest.

 

Over the next 3:05, the Lady Bulldogs ripped off a 10-0 run, as the Gator missed four straight shots and didn’t collect an offensive rebound, which turning the ball over twice.

 

Miller finally ended the spree with a three-pointer at the 14:31 mark, but Georgia came right back with the next four points between another Gator turnover.

 

Lewis then hit an inside bucket and traded scores with the hosts, before Moss converted a nifty spin move jumper in the paint and Lewis drilled a shot from just inside the arc that brought the Gators within 10 points, 24-14, with 10:43 remaining.

 

The spurt caused Georgia to call a timeout, after which it regrouped to mount a 15-6 run to end the half and take a commanding 39-20 halftime advantage.

 

Florida turned the ball over 10 times that resulted in nine points during the opening period, but Georgia did the most damage in the paint where it out-scored the Gators 25-14, thanks in part to 11 offensive rebounds that contributed to 16 second-chance points.

 

The Gators hit 30 percent from the floor, including 1-of-7 from the three-point arc. Lewis and George both scored six points for Florida, which also was out-rebounded, 27-18.

 

Florida began to show signs to a rally, cutting a 22-point deficit to 16 points early in the second half, as Mercer hit a jumper inside and George followed with an offensive rebound putback that sparked a 7-1 run, with the final three points coming from Moss with 16:26 remaining.

 

Georgia, however quickly answered with a three-pointer from Merritt Hempe with 16:07 on the clock that ignited a 17-2 run during the next 8:38 and the Lady Bulldogs were able to put the game away, assuming a 64-33 lead with 7:29 left in the game.

 

Jasmine Hassell finished with a game-high 13 points, while Tiaria Griffin added 12 points and Krista Donald 11 for Georgia.

 

Florida returns to action on Thur., Jan. 31, when the team travels to Columbia, Mo., to play SEC newcomer Missouri at Mizzou Arena, where tip-off is scheduled for 8 p.m. ET. The game will be the first ever meeting between the Gators and Tigers, as well as Florida’s first ever game played in the Show Me State.

 

There will not be any television coverage of the game, but fans wanting to follow the action can tune into the radio broadcast in Gainesville on The Star 99.5 FM, which is also available thru www.gatorzone.com for free.

 

 

For all of the latest information on Florida women’s basketball:

Official Website: www.gatorzone.com/basketball/women

Facebook: www.facebook.com/FloridaWomensBasketball

Twitter: @GatorZoneWBK  and  @CoachButlerUF 

 

-##-

Florida Athletics - A Championship Experience with Integrity - Vision Statement
  • University of Florida
  • NCAA
  • Sun Sports / Fox Sports Florida
  • IMG
  • SEC Network

© 1998 - 2014 University Athletic Assoc., Inc., Sun Sports & IMG College. All Rights Reserved.