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Saturday, May 18, 2024

Castleton, Kugel receive national recognition

Castleton named to multiple All-SEC teams, Kugel made All-Freshman list

Florida guard Riley Kugel celebrates a 3-pointer in the Gators' 82-74 loss to the Kentucky Wildcats Wednesday, Feb. 22, 2023.
Florida guard Riley Kugel celebrates a 3-pointer in the Gators' 82-74 loss to the Kentucky Wildcats Wednesday, Feb. 22, 2023.

Florida graduate student forward Colin Castleton and freshman guard Riley Kugel represented the Gators on Monday’s Southeastern Conference postseason awards lists. Castleton also garnered recognition from USA Today’s postseason awards.

The 6-foot-11-inch forward broke his hand Feb. 15 but still earned spots on the All-SEC teams. He was one of eight players to make the All-SEC first team. He also proved his defensive prowess as an inductee of the SEC All-Defensive Team.

Castleton is now the Gators’ fourth player this century to become a three-time All-SEC honoree.

USA Today added to Castleton’s already impressive resumé. The outlet named Castleton the SEC Defensive Player of the Year and gave him a spot on its All-SEC first team. The Associated Press also gave the graduate student a spot on its All-SEC second team.

Castleton led the Gators with 16 points per game, 7.7 rebounds per game and three blocks per contest — all team-best averages.

Kugel also made a name for himself as the season came to a close. He ended the season with eight double-digit scoring games in a row and averaged 20.2 points in the five games following Castleton’s season-ending injury.

The freshman guard earned his first SEC Freshman of the Week title Monday before he was listed on the SEC All-Freshman team on the same day.

Kugel and the Gators will now play the Mississippi State Bulldogs in the first round of the SEC Tournament at 1 p.m. Thursday at the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tennessee. The game will be broadcast on SEC Network. 

Contact Kyle Bumpers at kbumpers@alligator.org. Follow him on Twitter @BumpersKyle.

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Kyle Bumpers

Kyle Bumpers is a fourth-year journalism major and the sports editor of The Alligator. In his free time, he cries about Russell Wilson and writes an outrageous amount of movie reviews on Letterboxd.


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