The stage was set for one of the biggest stars in college basketball to shine: this was supposed to be Jimmer’s night. When the overtime
buzzer sounded, the scoreboard read 83-74, Florida over BYU.
The night belonged to the Gators and the spotlight shown brightest on Alex Tyus.
Jimmer Fredette played for 44 minutes of the contest and was 11-29 shooting; including 3-15 from the three point range and 7-7 from the line
for a total of 32 Pts. BYU (32-5) didn’t have another player score over 10 points. Noah Hartstock (F) and Jackson Emery (G) both finished with nine points, while Charles Abouo (G) had six, and Kyle Collingsworth (G) added five.
In stark contrast, four of the five Gator starters finished the game with double digits led by Tyus’ 19 Pts. and a career high 17 rebounds.
Kenny Boynton (G) had 17 pts., while Chandler Parsons (F) and Erving Walker (G) both added 16 points to the Gators’ effort.
Boynton and reserve guard Scottie Wilbekin’s defensive effort dominated Fredette, holding him scoreless for the first 14 minutes of
the game and again through overtime.
Florida came out quickly, shooting four threes for a 20-10 lead, but only sunk three on their next 11 attempts from beyond the arch. The
Cougars had the edge in rebounds 19-17, outscored the Gators 16-10 in the paint and forced 10 Florida turnovers, but both teams were locked at 36 going into halftime.
Fredette found his rhythm in the second half, scoring 22 points and tying the game three times in the final six minutes of regulation.
Parsons missed a layup with one second remaining, sending the game into overtime tied at 68.
The Gators jumped ahead with a four point lead to open overtime, and cruised for the rest of the game. Florida’s starters looked fresh
and full energy due to Coach Billy Donovan’s use of his bench throughout regulation.
Fredette, the nation’s leading regular season scorer, was given a well-deserved standing ovation when he left the game with one minute
remaining, but it was the Gators’ celebrating their advancement to the “Elite 8” moments later, proving nine is still greater than one.