Final: Florida 85, Alabama 77

Photo by James Gilbert | Getty Images

With their thirteenth win of the season, the Gators women’s basketball team has exceeded all of last year’s total. Florida defeated Alabama 85-77 in Tuscaloosa on Sunday and moved to 3-2 in conference play (13-5 overall).

The first quarter saw the two teams play back and forth with neither team gaining an advantage of more than three points. At the end of the first quarter, Alabama owned a 17-16 lead.

The second half also saw much of the same pace, though with :43 remaining, the Tide took a first half high five point lead after a made and-one layup by Megan Abrams. At the intermission, Florida trailed 29-27.

Alabama opened the second half hitting four of their first five attempts from the field and extended its lead to 6 at 39-33 with 7:21 to play. While Florida kept fighting, each time they’d get it to even, the Crimson Tide would go on a run. The Tide owned a seven point lead with :32 left, but Alberte Rimdal knocked down a three-ball at the buzzer to close the gap to 58-55.

With 8:24 on the clock in the fourth, Alabama’s Brittany Davis drilled a three to make it a nine point game and it appeared the rout was on. However, these Gators had a different plan. Kiki Smith made back to back layups to make it a five point deficit before the media timeout. From there, Florida took over. With 3:29 left, Jordyn Merritt knocked down a pair at the free throw line to put the Gators on top 73-72. Florida would never look back and took the 85-77 win.

Florida shot 47% from the floor while the Tide hit at a 42% clip. The Gators also hit at a high mark from beyond the three point line, going 8-19.

Alberte Rimdal scored a team high 17 points and hit all six of her field goal attempts, including all five three pointers. Zippy Broughton added 16 points and 6 rebounds. Faith Dut also made her presence in the paint known, adding 14 points, ten of which came in the third quarter. Nina Rickards also finished in double figures with 11.

The Gators will travel to Kentucky for a clash with the Wildcats on Thursday. Tipoff is scheduled for 7:00 PM. The Cats are 8-5 overall and 1-2 in the SEC. The team is 8-1 at home this year while Florida is 3-2 on the road.

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