Florida completes season sweep of Georgia in Athens with 72-60 win

12419220Mark Fox had to be experiencing déjà vu inside of Stegeman Coliseum this evening.  In the loss to South Carolina last Saturday, Georgia’s offense went over 8 minutes without a field goal; this evening, the Dawgs pulled a similar disappearing act, going more than 6 minutes without a bucket from the floor.  By the time Yante Maten finished an open dunk inside to end the drought, UGA (13-11, 4-7) trailed 63-52 with only 3:50 remaining, and the Dawgs would go on to lose 72-60.

But it wasn’t just poor shooting that did the Dawgs in on Tuesday evening.  Believe it or not, this contest was actually close at times.  With 16:00 left in the game, Florida held a slim 41-38 advantage.  Mark Fox’s team got careless, though, and turned the ball over on the next three possessions, which enabled the Gators to push the lead to 48-40 during a critical stretch of this game.

On the night, Georgia gave the ball away 16 times, and depending on how some other SEC games shake out this week, UGA could be leading the conference in giveaways by the weekend.  To make matters worse, Florida was opportunistic this evening, converting those Georgia TOs into 18 points.  Yante Maten carried the torch with 5 turnovers as he had trouble protecting the ball inside against multiple Florida defenders.  Jordan Harris gave the ball over 3 times himself, and he continues to get it stripped easily from his hands when he attempts to drive the ball at the defense.

Georgia struggled tonight offensively against a Florida team that is second in conference play in team defense, holding opponents to just 66 points a night.  The Gators are bigger and more athletic than UGA, and every time Yante Maten touched the ball inside the Florida zone collapsed on him.  Maten finished with 19 points and J.J. Frazier chipped in 18, but for the most part the Dawgs were stymied when they had the ball.  Georgia’s lack of shooters always becomes painfully apparent when they are playing strong defensive units that can overplay Maten and Frazier.  The Dawgs hit only 33% of their shots as a team, but everyone not named Maten or Frazier shot a collective 26% on the night.

Florida overwhelmed Georgia quickly at the start of this one as they jumped out to a 30-14 lead.  The Dawgs, though, responded with a 15-0 run of their own to cut the Gators’ advantage down to 30-29.  Florida went without a field goal for nearly 8 minutes of play during the latter portion of the first half, but Kasey Hill broke the spell by hitting a jumper with 1:45 left, which gave the Gators a 35-33 lead that they would take into the intermission.

Other than this stretch of play in the first half, UGA for much of the night had trouble handling Florida on defense.  The Gators’ backup point guard, Chris Chiozza, was a matchup nightmare for the Dawgs as he knifed into the middle of the lane whenever he wanted.  Chiozza led all Florida scorers with 15 points to go along with 4 steals, and he was one of four Gators to finish the game in double-figures.

These two teams played a tightly contested game and went to overtime a month ago in Gainesville, but it was pretty clear tonight that one team is trending upward and in the right direction, and the other team is Georgia.

Now the really bad news.  This loss marks the first time in Fox’s career that he has dropped 5 consecutive SEC games.  Furthermore, UGA has yet to earn a conference win against a team with a winning record in league play.  Georgia is 0-7 against what ESPN deems the RPI Top 50, and the Dawgs have now lost 22 straight games over the past five seasons to teams in ESPN’s RPI Top 25.

 

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14 thoughts on “Florida completes season sweep of Georgia in Athens with 72-60 win

  1. Have to admit, I forgot the game was on and watched a different horror show, “Green Room” on Netflix.

    Checked the box score, saw that the Dawgs turned it over 16 times. At least they’re consistent.

    Hoop is right about the lack of shooters. Fox doesn’t seem to like to recruit shooters.

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    1. Not sure if he doesn’t recruit shooters, or he coaches the shooting out of them with two years on the bench, followed by stale offensive tactics. I like Fox and wish he could figure it out, but I think he reached his pinnacle here a few years back.

      Maybe we need a better bagman?

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    2. Nothing, however, could have been more horrific than the last episode of The Bachelor, right? I’d give Hoop Dawgs a rose over that bratty Corinne anytime!

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  2. I too awakened from my nap to find the horror show on! The Gators(Goons) took the game to the Dogs from the time I awakened until I dozed back late in the 2nd half! The slash attack physically overcame the Dogs on defense as well as offense! Maten left early for halftime with a facial cut! Maten has improved his game 100% this year, but the Gators hit him where it hurt! All over! The rest of the Dogs were run over by the Gators from the opening gun! Fox can’t say anything since his explosion a few weeks ago, so the Dogs run of O/T losses has ended and Coach Fox is closer to the end of his tenure as the Dogs head coach! Luckily ESPN cut away to the South Carolina/Alabama game so I was able to see a bit of B-Ball before going down for the count!

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  3. You think it is ugly now… Fox said after the game that they may have to play like they did a couple of years ago… Very slow. As if watching this team isn’t hard enough right now.

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  4. Georgia’s guard play is horrendous. After almost 2 seasons Turtle Jackson is clearly a bust and Harris and Crump are starting to look like busts. Frazier knows it and has tried to do too much and his size handicaps him without some help. Whenever Fox goes the next coach needs to be a recruiter but I’m not sure McGarity has it in him to hire one.

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    1. Yeah, you hit the nail on the head with your last sentence. McGarity has a terrible track record on hiring. Maybe he should just ask his boss, the liquor king, to tell him who to hire (again).

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  5. Fox has really only had 2 legitimate shooters in his entire Georgia career (KCP and JJ). This is obviously not a good way to win in college basketball.

    There is no reasonable argument for NOT firing Coach Fox.

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    1. Agree! I have defended him and defended him. I again chose not to attend last night from the ATL. I even discussed cutting my tickets from 4 to 2 next year at breakfast this morning. I cannot watch this basketball anymore. And if the plan is slower offense, please let the press be smart enough to understand why the Steg will not sell out. How can you expect boosters and students to watch a team who scores around 60 a night score even less? He has to go. There is no reason not to change. We have no history of success so that should mean we are willing to take a chance and try again.

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  6. So Seth says there’s a chance Maten returns next season. Is that really the case? I can’t see how/why he would, but then I’m no expert. I just play one on the internet.

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