Sunday March 18, 2001Gators fall to Temple 75-54 in NCAA tournament
New Orleans, LA
Senior Major Parker scored 5 points in the final game of his Gator career
The Gators had trouble with Temple's zone defense and with the Owls' backcourt tandem of Lynn Greer and Quincy Wadley. Greer scored 20 points and dished out 9 assists and had 4 steals while Wadley scored 24 points and grabbed 10 rebounds. Senior Major Parker, who scored just 5 points in the final game of his Gator career, said Greer was a patient play- maker. "He showed great composure down the stretch," said Parker. "He led his team very well and kept his team under control."
Udonis Haslem led the Gators with 16 points. Matt Bonner had a double double with 13 points and 11 rebounds. The Gator backcourt of Teddy Dupay and Brett Nelson was just 6 for 21. Nelson had 9 first half points but only 3 in the second half. He hit a three-pointer to give the Gators an 18- 17 lead, but the Owls closed out the first half with a 28-7 run.
"We could never get the lead back," said Nelson. "We weren't executing on offense and that's why we lost."
Gator coach Billy Donovan was proud of his team, despite the lopsided defeat. "It's been a difficult year, from start to finish," said Donovan. "I'm very, very honored and proud to have the opportunity to coach these guys. Certainly we would have liked to advance and gone deeper into the tournament, but that did not happen. We'll hopefully use this experience to makes us better for the guys coming back."
The Gators end the season with a 24-7 record. Temple now moves to the South Regional semi-finals next weekend in Atlanta.