Final: Florida 57, Alabama 55
Florida head coach Cameron Newbauer told Delicia Washington that Alabama was daring her to shoot. That strategy cost the Tide as Washington rose to the occasion when Florida needed a basket.
Washington controlled possession near the elbow as the shot clock started to dwindle. Washington pulled up and sank a two pointer with fifteen seconds left that put the Gators in front 57-55.
After a pair of Alabama timeouts, the Crimson Tide’s Cierra Johnson put up a shot that bounced off the rim and into the outstretched hands of Washington to seal the victory. For the game, Washington had 7 points and 9 rebounds.
The Gators found themselves down by as many as nine in the second half but proved resilient enough to overcome the deficit.
Funda Nakkasoglu scored 20 points, with 13 coming in the second half. Danielle Rainey added 12 points and 4 boards while floor general Kiki Smith added 4 points, 11 rebounds, 4 assists and only turned the ball over twice.
Newbauer called it a “well-deserved” win while Nakkasoglu added that “it’s amazing, all the hard work is paying off.”
Florida improves to 6-17 on the season and 2-8 in SEC play. The Gators will travel to Athens on Sunday to take on Georgia in a matinee date. The Bulldogs are 13-9 overall and 4-5 in league action.