KeVaughn Allen never saw it go in.

After the ball left his hands on a fadeaway jumper from the right side of the three-point line, Allen fell backward onto the court as his shot sailed through the net.

It was a rare sight for Florida.

After a first half in which the Gators missed 15 of their 16 three-pointers and scored just 19 points, tied for their lowest scoring output in a half this season, Florida needed a scoring jolt.

The Gators got it in Allen.

The freshman scored 19 points on 7-of-13 shooting in Florida’s 57-53 win over Georgia in Athens on Tuesday night.

"He was a game changer," UF coach Mike White said. "

Even with Allen’s offensive effort, the game wasn’t sealed until the final seconds. After Georgia’s Kenny Gaines made a three pointer to bring the Bulldogs within one point with 25 seconds left, UF forward Dorian Finney-Smith made two free throws to extend Florida’s lead to three.

After a three-point miss by Gaines on Georgia’s next possession, Allen was fouled and made one of two free throws to put the game out of reach.

"He got it going there in the second half," White said of Allen. "He hit a couple really big shots."

Florida’s win was marred by a deflating performance in the first half in which the Gators went on an eight-minute scoring drought, including a three-minute span that saw the Gators miss five consecutive three-pointers.

"We’re always concerned with our guys offensive mindset and confidence level. That’s our weakness," White said. "But to maintain that focus and energy level when the ball isn’t going through the net for you, we did just enough."

Still, the Gators (17-9, 8-5 Southeastern Conference) only trailed by six points at halftime, largely due to their defense.

The Gators forced the Bulldogs (14-10, 7-6 SEC) into 10 turnovers and limited them to 32.3-percent shooting on the night, including just nine points in the paint.

Meanwhile, UF shot 36.4 percent from the field, 20 percent from three-point range and scored 22 points in the paint.

Center John Egbunu was the only other UF player to score in double figures, collecting 10 points on 4-of-8 shooting and seven rebounds. Finney-Smith added seven points and seven rebounds, but shot just 1-of-10 from the field in his worst shooting night of the season.

With the win, Florida moves into a three-way tie for third place in the SEC with Texas A&M and South Carolina. The Gators face the Gamecocks on the road on Saturday.

A radio broadcast contributed to this report.

Contact Ian Cohen at [email protected] and follow him on Twitter @icohenb

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