Mike White finally got the monkey off his back, that illusive victory over the school’s biggest rival.
A 13-0 run midway through the second half propelled the Gators to a 71-55 win over the Seminoles. Simply put, this game was one of the better efforts seen from White’s squad over the course of his tenure.
Forward Colin Castelton led the way with 15 points and a career high 16 rebounds, 8 on the offensive glass. Anthony Duruji added 15 and 7 boards.
The Gators came out of the gates hot, taking an 8-2 lead into the first media timeout, but Florida State heated up and tied the game at 15 with 9:06 remaining in the first half.
Twice the Seminoles would stretch their lead to four, but Florida closed in each time, the ‘Noles took a 30-28 lead into the halftime break.
Play continued in the second half as both teams more or less traded baskets until a Colin Castelton layup put the Gators on top 45-44 with 10:14 to go. The 13-0 would ensue and Florida would coast to the victory from there. The Gators lead would reach as high as 19 (after a Myreon Jones layup with 2:57 to play).
Florida forced the Seminoles into 17 turnovers and outbounded their rivals 44-33
Jones and Brandon McKissock also scored in double figures with 12 each.
For the Gators, this ends a futile streak of seven losses to Florida State dating back to Billy Donovan’s final season at UF.
The Gators will continue their season opening home stand with Thursday’s matchup with Milwaukee. Tipoff is slate for 6:00 PM.