Ten­nessee holds off UF

Orlando Sentinel (Sunday) - - SPORTS SUNDAY -

GAINESVILLE — Grant Wil­liams scored 20 points, Jordan Bow­den added 17 off the bench and No. 3 Ten­nessee ral­lied to beat Florida 78-67 on Satur­day for their 10th con­sec­u­tive vic­tory.

Ad­mi­ral Schofield, who sat out much of the second half with four fouls, pro­vided the big­gest bucket with a 3-pointer from the cor­ner with 41.3 sec­onds re­main­ing. Jalen Hud­son mis­fired on the other end, and the Ga­tors were forced to foul in the wan­ing sec­onds. Schofield’s shot came after Wil­liams ap­peared to get away with a travel in the lane.

Ten­nessee play­ers mock­ingly per­formed the “Ga­tor chomp” to fans after the fi­nal buzzer.

The Vol­un­teers (14-1, 3-0 South­east­ern Con­fer­ence) have their first dou­ble-digit win­ning streak since 2008.

Wil­liams, Bow­den and Schofield did much of the heavy lift­ing in the lat­est one.

Wil­liams made 8 of 11 shots to go along with nine re­bounds and four as­sists. Bow­den ac­counted for 14 con­sec­u­tive points in the second half — with Schofield on the bench — and then Schofield de­liv­ered the knock­out blow. Schofield fin­ished with 14 points.

KeVaughn

Ga­tors (9-6, points.

Florida led 38-35 at the half thanks to nine 3-point­ers. But coach Mike White’s team made just three from be­hind the arc in the second half.

Still, the Ga­tors had chances to pull off an upset. They twice al­lowed Wil­liams to make bas­kets after two of­fen­sive re­bounds in the second half and missed two treys in the fi­nal 1:14, in­clud­ing one off a turnover. Allen led the 1-2) with 18

The take­away: Ten­nessee: The Vol­un­teers have won five straight in true road games, a sign of their tal­ent and depth.

Florida: The Ga­tors went toe-to-toe with a top­five team, but just don’t have the fire power to score 80 to beat many elite teams.

Mullen hype: Florida foot­ball coach Dan Mullen ad­dressed the sell­out crowd be­fore the game, cred­it­ing his team for a 10-win sea­son that in­cluded a win against Michi­gan in the Peach Bowl.

“The Ga­tor stan­dard is to not be in second in the SEC, the Ga­tor stan­dard is about be­ing first in the SEC,” Mullen said. “The chal­lenge for all of us, the chal­lenge for the play­ers, for coaches and ev­ery­body in Ga­tor Na­tion, what we did last year was good enough for 10 wins and No. 6.

“This year we’re go­ing to ask you for a whole ’nother level. I chal­lenge you to bring back that Ga­tor stan­dard not to be No. 2, but to be at a cham­pi­onship level.”

Fa­mil­iar face: For­mer Florida guard Wal­ter Hodge, a two-time national cham­pion, was in at­ten­dance. Hodge cur­rently plays for Homenet­men Beirut in a pro­fes­sional league in Le­banon.

UM wins: Playing with a seven-man ro­ta­tion, the Mi­ami Hur­ri­canes saved some en­ergy in the clos­ing min­utes Satur­day by shoot­ing a lot of free throws.

Chris Lykes scored 25 points, in­clud­ing 12 free throws in the fi­nal five min­utes with­out a miss, and the Hur­ri­canes earned their first At­lantic Coast Con­fer­ence vic­tory by beat­ing Wake For­est 76-65.

Late-game fades have been an issue for the Hur­ri­canes, but in the second half they went 17 for 18 from the line while also shoot­ing 52 per­cent.

“Guys were still en­er­getic,” Lykes said. “In some of the ear­lier games we would have leads, but guys would be a lit­tle tired, and that’s how teams would come back on us. We did a good job con­trol­ling the pace.”

Mi­ami (9-7, 1-3 ACC) bounced back from its worst league start since join­ing the ACC in 2005.

“I don’t think any­body likes los­ing, so it’s def­i­nitely good to get one un­der our belts,” Lykes said.

Wake For­est (7-8, 0-3), with two fresh­man starters, lost for the fifth time in six games.

“Our guys are tak­ing steps,” coach Danny Man­ning said. “They just need to take them quicker.”

Lykes fin­ished 14 for 14 at the line and added four as­sists. Team­mate DJ Vasil­je­vic scored 14 points, in­clud­ing four 3-point­ers, and Ebuka Izundu had 11 points and 11 re­bounds.

Sopho­more Chaun­dee Brown scored a ca­reer-high 22 points for the De­mon Dea­cons. Bran­don Chil­dress, their lead­ing scorer this sea­son, shot 2 for 12 and to­taled only 11 points.

MATT STAMEY/AP PHO­TOS

Florida guard Noah Locke, right, is de­fended by Ten­nessee guard La­monte Turner dur­ing the first half of the Vol­un­teers vic­tory on Satur­day in Gainesville, Fla.

Ten­nessee guard La­monte Turner, right, drives past Florida guard KeVaughn Allen dur­ing Satur­day's game.

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