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SEC MEN'S TOURNAMENT - QUARTERFINAL - Bridgestone Arena - Nashville, Tennessee

Vanderbilt outlasts Florida in overtime 72-62

275 days ago
Associated Press

Game Notes | Vanderbilt Quotes | Florida Quotes

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Riley LaChance scored five of his 18 points in overtime, and No. 7 seed Vanderbilt topped No. 2 seed Florida 72-62 Friday night in the SEC Tournament quarterfinals.

The Commodores (19-14) beat the Gators for the third time this season and second in seven days to earn a berth Saturday in the semifinals. First-year coach Bryce Drew has Vanderbilt in the semifinals for the first time since 2013 with a win that should push his Commodores firmly into the NCAA Tournament for a second straight year.

Florida (24-8) fought back from an eight-point deficit to force overtime thanks to KeVaughn Allen, who made a tying 3 with 1:42 left. The Gators had the ball with the game tied at 58 but missed two shots in the final seconds of regulation.

Vanderbilt scored the first seven points of OT, with LaChance's jumper with 4:02 to go putting the Commodores ahead to stay.

Luke Kornet had 12 points and 10 rebounds for Vanderbilt, and Jeff Roberson finished with 16 points. Matthew Fisher-Davis added 11 points.

Allen and Kasey Hill each finished with 16 points for Florida. The Gators missed out on what would have been their first trip to the semifinals since 2014.

The SEC's best 3-point shooters, fresh off beating Texas A&M for a third time this season, had the advantage from beyond the arc against the Gators. The Commodores, who matched a season low with only five made 3s against the Gators last Saturday, went 11 of 27 (40.7 percent) from 3 compared to just 6 of 23 (26.1 percent) by Florida.

The Commodores led 33-28 at halftime and were up by eight a couple times, the last with 3:27 left.

The Gators, who lost the regular-season series by a combined four points, tied it up with eight straight points, with Allen's 3 helping force overtime.

BIG PICTURE

Vanderbilt: Drew now has beaten Mike White, the SEC Coach of the Year, three times in his inaugural season. He also has two more wins in the SEC Tournament than his predecessor, Kevin Stallings, managed over the past three seasons. The Commodores secured their fifth straight win against the Gators, their longest win streak vs. Florida since 1989-91.

Florida: Other losses over the past few days should keep the Gators a No. 4 seed in the NCAA Tournament along with a chance to open in Orlando. The best thing the Gators can hope for is not to see Vanderbilt anywhere in their bracket once the pairings are announced Sunday. White is 0-5 against Vanderbilt.

UP NEXT

The Commodores advance to play in the second semifinal game Saturday on ESPN. They will face No. 3 seed Arkansas. The second semifinal game will begin 25 minutes after the conclusion of the Alabama-Kentucky game, which tips off at 1 p.m. ET.