The Gators looked to continue correcting recent wrongs with their trip to New York. After dropping an inexcusable home contest against previously winless Texas Southern and following it with a drubbing of North Florida, the Gators sought to feed on a reeling Maryland squad that saw their coach quit just a week earlier.
Instead, as has played out far too often, the streaky shooting of the squad forced a much closer game than what should have been.
While neither team ever led by more than 7, it was a sluggish pace for the Gators. Eventually, Tyree Appleby would come in and hit some shots to keep Florida in striking distance, but that wasn’t nearly enough against the Terrapins.
Appleby and Phlandrous Fleming each scored 15 to lead the Gators, but the absence of an interior threat hurt. Forward Colin Castelton made just 3-9 from the floor and missed several opportunities at the rim before fouling out.
Maryland’s three guard set seemed to result in constant open shots, which were made most of the time. Eric Ayala, Fatts Russell, and Hakim Hart combined for 49 points on 16-30 from the field.
The Gators will have to get it figured out as they get set to wrap up non-conference play. They will face South Florida in Sunrise on Saturday as part of the annual Orange Bowl Classic. That game is scheduled to tip-off at 1:00 PM.