Ohio State forward EJ Liddell’s six foot leaner rattled off the rim with eight seconds remaining in a tie game. What happened next was really fun for Florida fans.
Colin Castleton knocked the ball towards the perimeter where Myreon Jones picked it up and passed it off to Tyree Appleby at midcourt with just over three seconds left.
Despite having the timeouts available, Florida head coach Mike White opted to see what his veteran team would do in such a situation.
Instead, Appleby took a dribble and calmly sank a deep trey as time expired to give Florida the 71-68 victory to claim the Fort Myers Tip-Off championship.
The Gators moved to 5-0 on the season and continue to play a brand of basketball that is bringing a lot of excitement to the hardwood.
The Buckeyes led for more than 33 minutes including an 8-2 open to the game before the Gators managed to find any rhythm offensively.
Phlandrous Fleming scored a team high 19 points and hit 9-10 from the charity stripe, including four straight with 9:03 remaining to get Florida to within two just minutes after the OSU lead swelled to ten.
Prior to the game winning sequence, Appleby tossed it high and deep, but uber athletic Anthony Duruji rose up and slammed it home to tie the game at 68 and set up the grand finale.
Castleton added 11 points and 13 rebounds while CJ Felder was also in double digits with 10 points on 3-4 from the field. The Gators knocked down 37% of their attempts while allowing the Buckeyes to make 53%.
The Gators will return to the O’Dome with a matchup against Troy on Sunday before traveling to Oklahoma for a date with the Sooners next week.
The game against the Trojans will tip at 12:00 PM and air live on SEC Network.