Georgetown-Florida Preview

BY foxsports • November 25, 2014

Injuries have hampered Florida early this season, and things don't look to be improving quickly.

The 18th-ranked Gators expect to have only six scholarship players available Wednesday night when they head to the Bahamas to kick off the Battle 4 Atlantis tournament against Georgetown.

Guard Eli Carter and forward Dorian Finney-Smith will make the trip with Florida (2-1), but coach Billy Donovan does not expect either player to be able to play. Carter sprained his left foot in practice last week, and Finney-Smith has missed the last two games with hairline fractures in the index and middle fingers on his left hand.

Both players were held out of Florida's 61-56 overtime win over Louisiana-Monroe on Friday.

"I really don't know with those guys," Donovan said Monday. "My feeling right now going into this we're going to basically have the team we had playing against Louisiana-Monroe. That's how I'm going into it right now, how I'm approaching it."

Michael Frazier II led the Gators on Friday with 21 points, and freshman Chris Chiozza added 11 along with four steals off the bench. Walk-on Jacob Kurtz has started the last two games for Finney-Smith, grabbing 21 rebounds.

Carter led the Gators with 21 points against now-No. 17 Miami in Florida's only loss, and Finney-Smith scored a team-high 15 in his only game - a win over William & Mary.

"You're taking 30 points basically off the floor, which is fine, but I didn't think we functioned well as a unit offensively," Donovan said. "I think there have been some times when we had some injuries, like last year, and some suspensions, and we were kind of able to work around that because I think guys had a real good cerebral understanding of what we're doing.

"I didn't feel like we had that understanding Friday."

Georgetown (3-0) is trending in the opposite direction with three convincing wins, albeit against weaker competition. The Hoyas, who remain unranked but received votes in the latest AP Top 25 poll, dispatched St. Francis (N.Y.), Texas A&M-Corpus Christi and, most recently, Robert Morris 80-66 on Saturday.

Senior center Joshua Smith has recorded back-to-back double-doubles, including 22 points and 11 rebounds Saturday. Point guard D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera didn't have a point or a rebound against Texas A&M-Corpus Christi, but he bounced back Saturday to post season highs of seven assists and 12 points along with six boards.

"I just want to affect the game in every way possible, it's not really about me," said Smith-Rivera, who averaged a team-high 17.6 points last season. "I think so far it's been great, everybody has been getting good looks at the basket and getting guys involved is key, just making sure that everybody is comfortable.

"We have a big stretch coming up with the Bahamas so we want to make sure everybody is ready and as prepared as can be."

Florida and Georgetown last matched up in 2012 on the USS Bataan at Naval Station Mayport in Jacksonville, Fla. - a game that was halted at halftime due to moisture on the court and never resumed.

Georgetown has lost its last two completed contests against Florida, most recently in the Sweet 16 of the 2006 NCAA tournament, and the Gators went on to win the championship.

The winner of Wednesday's matchup will move on to play the winner between second-ranked Wisconsin and UAB in the Atlantis semifinals Thursday. North Carolina, Oklahoma, UCLA and Butler are also tournament participants.