Florida cruises past Ole Miss behind a great shooting effort

After losing three conference games in a row, Florida entered their 13th conference game against Ole Miss in dire need of a victory.

The Gators took care of business inside the O’Connell Center, improving to 14-12 (7-6 SEC) after defeating the Rebels 79-64 on Wednesday night. 


The game started off slow for Florida, who turned the ball over nine times in the first half and allowed 11 offensive rebounds.

Todd Golden’s squad found themselves leading 39-29 heading into halftime, but only because “we were making every shot,” as coach Golden put it in the postgame press conference.

The Gators made 2/3rds of their shots in the first 20 minutes, connecting on 14-21 from the field and 62.5% from three-point range.

Florida played a much cleaner second half, turning the ball over three times and allowing just five offensive rebounds after halftime.


It became clear from early on that the Rebels’ strategy was to double-team Colin Castleton, eliminating him from the game and making the rest of Florida’s team beat them.

The other four players in the Gators’ starting five (Jones, Kugel, Richard, and Lofton) combined for 50 points on 19-28 from the field (67.8%).

The Gators’ ball movement led to 15 team assists, allowing Florida to shoot 59.2% from the field and 61.1% from three-point range (11-18).

Tonight was one of the better effort’s I’ve seen from senior guard Kyle Lofton. He totaled 10 points on 4-6 shooting, seven assists, four rebounds, two turnovers, and two steals.

Myreon Jones carried the Gators from the three-point line, finding the bottom of the net on 5 of his 7 long balls. The graduate added eight rebounds to the stat sheet.

Castleton left the game early with an apparent wrist injury. The status of his injury is unknown as Castleton is currently undergoing X-ray’s. Gator Country will continue to monitor the status of the 6-11 forward.

Florida didn’t skip a beat with Castleton in the locker room, outscoring Ole Miss 32-23 in the last 15 minutes of the game.


Florida’s defense got back on track after an awful two game skid, holding Ole Miss to 39.7% from the field and 25% from beyond the arc.

Golden’s strategy when defending the perimeter is to limit three-point attempts because there’s only so much you can control when the ball is in the air. The Gators did just that tonight, holding the Rebels to a reasonable 12 three-point attempts.


The Gators cashed in on a “must win” game tonight, but it won’t get any easier as Florida travels to Arkansas to take on the Razorbacks in Fayetteville on Saturday afternoon at 2:00 pm.





Nick Marcinko
Nick is a recent graduate from the University of Florida with a degree in Telecommunications. He is passionate about all sports but specifically baseball and football. Nick interned at Inside the Gators and worked part time with Knights247 before joining the Gator Country family. Nick enjoys spending his free time golfing and at the beach.