Florida men’s basketball coach Mike White has said all season that one of his team’s shortcomings is its ability to play with consistency. Facing Georgia in Athens on Tuesday, the Gators continued that trend, suffering a loss several days after a big win for the third time this month.
Before going cold in Tuesday’s 72-60 defeat to the Bulldogs, the No. 23 Gators took apart Baylor 81-60 at home on Saturday.
On Jan. 20, Florida (15-7, 6-3 SEC) snapped Kentucky’s 30-game SEC home winning streak with a 66-64 victory over the Wildcats.
Four days later, South Carolina overpowered the Gators 77-72 at the O’Connell Center.
And on Jan. 10, Florida dismantled Mississippi State, 71-54. Three days later, UF lost its first SEC game of the season to Ole Miss, 78-72.
White said before Tuesday’s game that two keys to victory against Georgia would be defending and rebounding.
The Bulldogs (13-8, 4-5 SEC) shot a better percentage than Florida and converted 18-of-22 free throws. The Gators attempted only six free throws the entire game.
Georgia also outrebounded the Gators 44-35 and pulled down 15 offensive boards, including 10 in the first half. Frontcourt starters Kevarrius Hayes and Keith Stone combined for 10 points and eight rebounds, while Georgia forward Yante Maten had 20 points and seven rebounds.
Florida continues to miss the size of center John Egbunu and forwards Isaiah Stokes and Chase Johnson. All three are recovering from injury and haven't set a date for return.
Guard KeVaughn Allen’s struggles this year have been well-chronicled.
Allen led UF in scoring last season and helped propel the Gators to the Elite Eight with a 35-point explosion against Wisconsin. But the Little Rock, Arkansas, native has struggled to find a rhythm since transfers Jalen Hudson and Egor Koulechov joined this year’s roster.
Allen scored nine points on 4-of-11 shooting against the Bulldogs, missing four of his five three-point attempts. He missed his final five shots of the game, snapping a streak of four straight games scoring in double figures.
Allen scored 28 points in a Jan. 17 win against Arkansas in what many hoped would be a breakout performance. But Allen has followed up by scoring 11, 15, 10 and now nine points as he continues to struggle to regain his offensive prowess.
Hudson, who leads the team with 16.2 points per game, failed to get anything going against Georgia. The redshirt junior went 3-for-14 from the field. Koulechov finished with 13 points and seven rebounds in the loss.
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Florida guard KeVaughn Allen scored nine points against Georgia on Tuesday. After leading UF in scoring last season, Allen has fallen into a lesser role behind transfers Jalen Hudson and Egor Koulechov.