Florida overwhelms Jacksonville 79-34, wins 3rd straight

BY foxsports • December 14, 2014

GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) Dorian Finney-Smith scored a career-high 25 points, Michael Frazier II added a season-high 22 and Florida beat Jacksonville 79-34 on Sunday.

The Gators (6-4) never trailed, won their third consecutive game and made a season-high 13 3-pointers.

Florida was at its best at the end of the first half and throughout the second. Finney-Smith's bank shot capped a 16-7 run to close the first 20 minutes. He scored five of the first seven points after the break, helping ignite a 22-4 run that turned a 10-point game into a rout.

Finney-Smith, Frazier and Eli Carter each hit 3-pointers during the second-half spurt, and the Gators finished 13 of 27 from behind the arc.

Finney-Smith and Frazier led the way. Finney-Smith, who missed two games earlier this season because of broken bones in his left hand, made 5 of 7 treys. Frazier made 6 of 11.

Jon Horford was the only other Florida player in double figures, scoring 12 points to go with eight rebounds.

Kori Babineaux scored 10 points to pace Jacksonville (2-9), which lost its fifth straight game.

The Dolphins were coming off a seven-day break because of final exams and played well early. They used a 7-0 run to make it a one-point game, 18-17, on Babineaux's driving layup. But Florida pulled away from there and outscored Jacksonville 45-10 in the second half.

Finney-Smith had the hot hand, making 10 of 15 shots from the field and scoring inside and out. His spinning layup put the Gators ahead 64-33 with 7:33 remaining.

The Southeastern Conference's Sixth Man of the Year last season, Finney-Smith has made a smooth transition into the starting lineup. But his hand injury left him playing in pain and kept him from being fully effective. He went three straight games without topping double digits, but as his hand healed, he started to look much more like his usual self.

The former Virginia Tech standout has scored 14, 11 and now 25 in Florida's last three games. Maybe more telling, he's been able to crash the backboards and get 18 in the same span.


Jacksonville: The Dolphins fell to 5-31 in the series, including 1-22 in the O'Dome during Florida coach Billy Donovan's tenure. ... Jacksonville made 2 of 6 free throws.

Florida: Won't play at home again until 2015. The Gators will be away from the O'Connell Center for 20 days, with their next home game coming Jan. 3 against defending national champion UConn. ... Chris Walker, who averaged 12.3 points the previous three games, finished with two against Jacksonville.


Jacksonville hosts Gardner-Webb on Wednesday.

Florida plays Wake Forest in the Orange Bowl Classic on Saturday.