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The Gators nearly overcame a 20-0 deficit Saturday but could not come all the way back.

Saturday November 2, 2013The Quick Slant: Instant Analysis from Florida's 23-20 loss to Georgia

The Gators nearly overcame a 20-0 deficit Saturday but could not come all the way back.

Scott Carter
By SCOTT CARTER
GatorZone.com Senior Writer

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- The annual Florida-Georgia game here at EverBank Field on Saturday came down to the end.

That didn't look possible at the start.

On the way to a 23-20 victory over the Gators, Georgia opened a 20-0 lead in the first half.

The Gators were down by two touchdowns less than six minutes into the game.

However, they turned momentum in their favor after halftime but ran out of time as Georgia escaped with its third consecutive win in the rivalry.

THE QUICK SLANT

WHAT IT MEANS: The Gators are officially eliminated from the SEC East race. Florida and Georgia both maintained slim division title hopes entering the game. The Bulldogs' bid remains intact. As for the Gators, they now must win two of their final four games to become bowl eligible.

IN THE SPOTLIGHT: The Gators' defense was shredded for 259 yards in the first quarter as Georgia took a 17-0 lead. However, the unit came up with a couple of key plays in the second half -- defensive tackle Leon Orr's fumble recovery and a sack for a safety by Loucheiz Purifoy -- to slow Georgia down.

STAGGERING STATISTIC: The Gators lost their third consecutive game to Georgia, which hasn't happened since 1987-89. Florida stormed back to make it a close game but was unable to overcome a 20-0 deficit in the first half.

SUBPLOT: Georgia running back Todd Gurley had missed the last three games but was determined to play against Florida despite still recovering from a high ankle sprain. Gurley scored two early touchdowns and then went to the locker room. He returned to finish with 100 yards on 17 carries, providing the Bulldogs some tough runs down the stretch.

UP NEXT: The Gators (4-4, 3-3 in SEC) play in The Swamp for the first time in a month when Vanderbilt comes to town on Homecoming for Florida. Florida will try to rebound from three consecutive losses away from home. The Gators have won 10 consecutive games at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium.

 

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