Saturday February 2, 2013Gators host Alabama on Sunday at 1 p.m., PINKZONE Game, Family 4-Pack Special
Gators host Alabama at 1 p.m.
Gators host Alabama at 1 p.m.
Florida returns to the O’Connell Center on Sunday when the Gators play host to Alabama and seek a return to their winning ways.
Tip-off from the O’Connell Center is scheduled for 1 p.m. and fans who wear pink to the game receive $1 general admission tickets. It’s also a FAMILY 4-PACK SUNDAY, where 4 general admission tickets, 4 hot dogs and 4 sodas cost $20.
The Gators will be wearing PINK uniforms as part of the Southeastern Conference’s initiative to raise awareness for breast cancer. The first 500 fans receive “Live Life All In” Pink wristbands.
The Gators have lost their last five games, four of those by eight points or less, including Thursday evening’s 69-64 setback at Missouri. They capped the first half of their Southeastern Conference slate with a 2-6 record
During UF’s current five-game losing streak, the Gators have won the rebounding battle just once (48-41 vs. Tennessee). Overall this year, the team has lost the rebounding battle six times and was even once (at Missouri). Another statistical change has been the team’s effort at the free throw line, where the Gators have converted a woeful 53.8 percent (50-93) during the last five games, while sending their opponents to the charity stripe 130 times (that’s an average of 26 times per game).
Florida’s last meeting against 11 of the 13 other teams from the SEC has been decided by 10 points or less.
“There are lot of things we have to build on from the first half of the SEC season,” UF head coach Amanda Butler said. “We’re very hard working and we’re a talented team with a lot of energy. There has to be a greater level of consistency, individually. We have to know who we can rely on and that’s been really hard. We’ve had a lot of individual inconsistent play and that collectively, makes us look a certain way. We’ve got to reach a level where we know what to expect day-in and day-out from certain individuals, whether you’re talking about statistics or things that don’t show up in the stat sheet. If we can get that down and get a little clearer picture of what it’s going to look like every day, then I think we’ll be hard to beat.”
Alabama has lost its last two games entering Sunday’s outing in Gainesville, most recently a 65-59 loss at Georgia. Each of the Tide’s last three games have been decided by 10 points or less, including their 61-51 win against Auburn (Jan. 24).
“The keys to us beating Alabama are playing Florida Basketball,” Butler said. “That’s one of the things we have not done consistently the last several games out. Alabama is a great team and they have at transfer from Rutgers who is playing very well and leading them in scoring. They have some other dominant players from the last couple years, one of whom is Keinesha Horn. They are shooting the ball well. They gave Georgia all they wanted on Sunday. We have to play Florida Basketball.”
The winner of the game between Florida and Alabama has alternated over the last four meetings, with the Gators most recently claiming the 61-37 win on Jan. 19, 2012, in Gainesville. Prior to that 24-point outcome, the previous three games had been decided by six points or less, with the Tide winning two of those thrillers.
Alabama leads the overall 51-game series, 29-22, but Florida carries a 12-7 advantage when playing in Gainesville. Oddly, enough, the Tide sport the same record (12-7) against Florida when playing in Tuscaloosa. The difference in the series has been on neutral courts, where Alabama holds the 10-3 advantage.
Florida senior Jennifer George, who was named as preseason first-team All-SEC selections by the league’s coaches and media, continues to recover and become more comfortable on the court since injuring her shoulder in the game against LSU on January 7.
George leads the Gators in scoring (12.7), rebounding (8.0), steals (2.0) and field goal percentage (52.5%) and ranks second for blocked shots (29).
Junior guard Jaterra Bonds is averaging 11.8 points (second on the team) with 4.0 rebounds and 3.4 assists (leads the team) per game. Bonds, who is the only Gator who has started every game, ranks 10th in SEC games for scoring (15.0 ppg), sixth for free throw percentage (77.1%) and 15th for field goal percentage (39.6%).
Over the last four games, redshirt-freshman Kayla Lewis is averaging 9.3 points per game and 6.8 rebounds - and that includes her two-point, two-rebound effort at Missouri (Jan. 31). She scored a career-high 22 points in the loss to Ole Miss (Jan. 24) and collected a team-best 10 rebounds at Georgia (Jan. 27) marking the fourth time this year and in her career she logged a double-figure rebounding total.
Freshman Sydney Moss ranks second on the team for assists (3.4 apg) and steals (1.6 pg), while ranking third for scoring (9.9), and rebounding (6.1 rpg). She has flirted with a triple-double four times. Among SEC freshmen entering the games of Feb. 3, Moss ranks second for assists, fourth for rebounding and third for scoring. She has been the Gator’s game leader for assists 10 times, for rebounding six times and scoring four times.
“It’s Alumni Weekend and we want to make our Gator sisters proud. We need to get a win for those guys,” said Butler, who was a four-year Gator letterwinner, herself.
Sunday’s game against Alabama marks the 14th consecutive year Florida has played on Super Bowl Sunday. It’s also the third time the Gators and Crimson Tide have squared off on Super Bowl Sunday, with Alabama winning both prior meetings (in 1986 and 2005). The Gators sport a 9-10 all-time record when playing on Super Bowl Sunday, including a 6-3 mark at home.
Florida (13-9, 2-6 SEC) vs. Alabama (12-9, 2-6 SEC)
Sun., Feb. 3, 2013 * 1 p.m. ET
Stephen C. O’Connell Center (11,373)
Game Coverage & More!
Radio: LIVE on The Star 99.5 FM (WBXY) in Gainesville and on AM930 (WFXJ) in Jacksonville with Adam Schick & Brittany Davis
Internet Audio: LIVE thru www.Gatorzone.com (FREE)
Internet Scoring: LIVE thru www.Gatorzone.com (FREE)
Internet Video: LIVE on www.GatorVision.tv (subscription)
Television: LIVE statewide on FS Florida (Cox Ch. 70 in Gainesville) with Mick Hubert & Mark Wise
O’Connell Center Press Row: 352-367-1801
Tickets: Wear pink and receive $1 general admission!
$5 for reserved seats; $4 adult general admission; $2 for youth age 17 and under; FREE for UF and Santa Fe students
Parking: FREE in the O’Connell Center lot
*the Gators will be wearing PINK uniforms as part of the WBCA’s PinkZone initiative to raise awareness of breast cancer
*it’s Gator Alumni Weekend!
*the game marks the 14th consecutive season the Gators have played on Super Bowl Sunday
*the Gators are 9-10 all-time when playing on Super Bowl Sunday
*7 of UF’s 8 SEC games have been decided by 8 points or less
*Overall UF has played 10 games decided by 10 points or less (5-5)
*Jaterra Bonds has been UF’s leading scorer in 5 of 7 SEC games
*George is preseason 1st Team All-SEC selection by coaches & media
Additional Hoopla for Sunday’s Game
Pink Day – Breast Cancer awareness game. Teams will be wearing pink uniforms and have PINK equipment and pink warm-ups. Wear pink and receive $1 general admission.
Pink Silicone Band Giveaway-The first 500 fans receive “Live Life All In” Pink wristbands with ribbon logo. Gate 1 location.
Champions of Character II – Elementary and middle schools in Alachua, Marion, Columbia, Bradford and Putnam counties are invited to one of a three select games. Students and faculty/staff will receive one free ticket. Each school is allowed to select up to 10 outstanding students to be recognized at halftime. Guests of students will receive $1 general admissions tickets!
Family 4 Pack Sunday – 4 general admission tickets, 4 hot dogs, and 4 sodas for only $20!
Campus Challenge-Campus Challenge designated game. Dorm communities on campus will compete against each other in a March Madness style attendance competition for a chance to win prizes and unique opportunities with Florida Women’s Basketball (Final Elite Eight matchup-Tolbert vs. Broward)
Alumni Weekend-Florida Women’s Basketball welcomes alumni back for a special presentation
Post-game Autographs -The Gators will sign autograph posters for 30 minutes following the game
For all of the latest information on Florida women’s basketball:
Official Website: www.gatorzone.com/basketball/women
Twitter: @GatorZoneWBK and @CoachButlerUF