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<p>UF forward Savannah Jordan takes a shot during Florida's 2-1 win against LSU on Oct. 11, 2015, at James G. Pressly Stadium.</p>

UF forward Savannah Jordan takes a shot during Florida's 2-1 win against LSU on Oct. 11, 2015, at James G. Pressly Stadium.

A team that had nothing to lose but almost everything to gain was awaiting the Florida soccer team Thursday night in Athens, Georgia.

But in the end, the Gators prevailed.

No. 6 Florida jumped out to an early lead and did not look back against the Bulldogs, winning 3-0 and claiming the program’s 14th regular-season Southeastern Conference title and its first since splitting the honors with Texas A&M in 2013.

Florida (14-3-1, 8-2-1 SEC) was already locked in as one of the top three teams in the SEC tournament, but Georgia (5-11-1, 4-7-0 SEC) was fighting to stay alive.

The Bulldogs entered Thursday’s match on a two-game winning streak after defeating Vanderbilt and No. 16 Auburn in two late season road wins to keep the team’s playoff hopes alive.

But Georgia’s momentum heading into the match was quickly erased by the SEC’s top scoring team and the league’s top scorer, Florida forward Savannah Jordan.

Jordan helped lead the Gators to a 10-2 shot advantage in the first half and put two of her shots in the back of the net to send Florida into halftime with a 2-0 lead.

Jordan’s first goal came in the 21st minute on a play that looked like a routine passing drill.

The back line sent a ball to senior Lauren Smith in the midfield.

Smith tapped it to Meggie Dougherty Howard who then flicked it on to forward Brooke Sharp, the middle man in a fast-moving, one-touch passing sequence.

Sharp pushed the ball through two Georgia defenders and found Jordan, who slipped it to the right of the goalkeeper, Louise Hogrell.

Georgia’s Hogrell saved two shots in the first half but let the Gators’ lead double on a blunder when she came off her line and tried to clear a bouncing ball outside of the penalty area.

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Hogrell misplayed a ball that flew over Jordan and the defenders’ heads.

As she has done so often this season, the Fayetteville, Georgia, native, sprinted after the bouncing ball with a headful of steam.

Jordan challenged the keeper, put the ball through the goalie’s legs and easily placed the ball into the empty net.

The goals were Jordan’s SEC-leading 18th and 19th of the year and the two-goal game marked her fifth multi-goal game of the year.

After the halftime break, the Gators didn’t let off the gas, increasing the margin for error by placing another shot into the back of the net.

In the 55th minute, senior defender Christen Westphal sent a free kick into the box toward Jordan and a push in the back resulted in the referee pointing to the penalty spot.

Junior midfielder Pamela Begic stepped up into the box and calmly placed the ball into the bottom left corner of the net, giving the Gators a 3-0 lead.

Despite a closer second half in terms of shots for each team, Florida held on to get the shutout.

Coach Becky Burleigh said her team started the match with a good level of energy and created possession, wearing the Georgia defense down and giving UF its second straight SEC shutout.

"I do feel like that shutout is key," Burleigh said. "I think it just gives us more and more confidence the more we can keep a clean sheet."

With the loss, Georgia moved to 0-6-0 this season when trailing at the half.

The Gators continued their dominance over the Bulldogs, winning their ninth straight game against Georgia and sixth game in a row closing out the season.

Florida will play Wednesday in the SEC tournament in Orange Beach, Alabama.

 Follow Ryan Summers on Twitter @RyanSummers18

UF forward Savannah Jordan takes a shot during Florida's 2-1 win against LSU on Oct. 11, 2015, at James G. Pressly Stadium.

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