ATLANTA -- With just over 10 minutes remaining, top-ranked Florida found itself in a dogfight, looking very much like it
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ATLANTA -- With just over 10 minutes remaining, top-ranked Florida found itself in a dogfight, looking very much like it could be headed for its first loss against a Southeastern Conference team. Not to worry. Scottie Wilbekin and the Gators suddenly turned this one into a laugher with one of their customary spurts. Wilbekin and Michael Frazier II scored 15 points apiece, and Florida dominated down the stretch for a 72-49 rout of Missouri in the quarterfinals of the SEC tournament Friday, giving the Gators their 24th consecutive victory and likely erasing any question about whether theyll be a No. 1 seed in the NCAAs. Florida, as always, found a way to seize control. As usual, it came down to defence and 3-point shooting. "Weve got a group thats pretty cerebral and theyre pretty good at making adjustments," Florida coach Billy Donovan said. The Gators (30-2) went 12-of-21 from 3-point range, making their final five attempts. And the swarming defence forced 14 turnovers, leading to 19 points. The final score was hardly indicative of how it went most of the game. Missouri sprinted to the locker room on a high -- tied at 29 after Ryan Rosburgs buzzer-beating dunk -- and the Tigers were still in it approaching the midway point of the second half. "I was disappointed in our first half," Donovan said. "I thought we looked a little it out of it and didnt play as well as wed hoped to." But any thoughts of a major upset against the first team to go 18-0 in the SEC during the regular season quickly faded away. Wilbekin made sure of that. After Will Yeguete laid one in off a nifty pass from Kasey Hill, Florida pressed the inbounds pass, Wilbekin came up with a steal, then got free in the corner for a 3-pointer. Missouri missed at the other end, Patric Young connected on a short hook and just like that, the Gators had stretched a two-point lead to 45-36. It only got worse from there for the Tigers. During a wild scramble on the floor after Keanau Post lost control, Wilbekin yanked the ball away from a Missouri player and smartly called a timeout to ensure the Gators kept possession. Then, coming out of the break, he knocked down another trey to put the Gators ahead 50-36, capping a 12-0 run. Wilbekin finished 5 of 6 beyond the arc and Frazier was 5 of 7. Dorian Finney-Smith chipped in with 10 points, but this was the usual team effort by the Gators. Eight Florida players scored at least four points. Hill had five assists. Finney-Smith grabbed nine rebounds. As the closing seconds ticked off the clock, Donovan was able to clear his bench-- even sending in his son. "Its hard to get 30 wins," the coach said. The Gators outscored Missouri 34-13 over the final 10:06, advancing to face the winner of Tennessee-South Carolina game in Saturdays semifinals. "They play in tandem with each other well," Missouris Jabari Brown said. "They always know where their teammates are going to be at. Theyre a disciplined team." In some ways, this game mirrored Floridas 68-58 victory over the Tigers in early February. The teams went back-and-forth in that contest, but Frazier knocked down a trio of 3-pointers in a two-minute span, giving the Gators some breathing room. More of the same in the rematch. "They made a couple in transition," Missouri coach Frank Haith said. "They move the ball so well. They really share the ball." Brown scored 18 points to lead Missouri, but Jordan Clarkson with 11 was the only other player in double figures. The Tigers shot just 36 per cent (16 of 44) from the field, including a dismal 1-of-13 performance from outside the stripe -- which looked even worse next to Floridas dead-eye shooting from the outside. Also, Missouri managed just six points off Floridas nine turnovers. "They were getting second shots," Haith said. "I thought that was the difference in the game." With Florida, everything plays off their effort at the defensive end. "It starts with getting stops," Wilbekin said. "Because if we score and they score, it wont be a run." Now, Missouri will have to hope its done enough to land a spot in the NCAA tournament, but its performance in the league may keep the Tigers out. After starting 12-1 and claiming a spot in the Top 25, they went 9-9 in the SEC and split their two games at the Georgia Dome. "Well see," Brown said. Ventura Alvarado Jersey . -- On any given day here at his companys Silicon Valley headquarters, Vivek Ranadive is ready to compete against any employee who wants to challenge him to any contest. Matt Miazga Jersey . - Leon Draisaitl scored a hat trick as the Prince Albert Raiders stormed past the Swift Current Broncos 5-2 in Western Hockey League action Tuesday. http://www.soccerusafansshop.com/John-B ... -Jersey/.m. ET, CBSOPENING LINE — Falcons by 3 1/2RECORD VS. Antonee Robinson Jersey .C. -- Kurt Busch put his chances at "70 per cent" at running the Indianapolis 500 this year because of recent developments that have pushed a potential program along. Zack Steffen Jersey . -- Washington Redskins linebacker Brian Orakpo is going to the Pro Bowl as a replacement for San Francisco 49ers linebacker Ahmad Brooks.Anaheim, CA (SportsNetwork.com) - Frederik Andersen stopped 21 shots to lead the Anaheim Ducks in a 2-1 win over the Edmonton Oilers in the opener of a home-and-home set. Ryan Kesler and Matt Beleskey each had a goal for the Ducks, who have ripped off five straight victories. Anaheim secured the victory a day after learning that star forward Corey Perry will be out 3-to-4 weeks with a sprained knee. He suffered the injury last Friday against Minnesota, and the team learned the extent of the injury on Tuesday. Ryan Nugent-Hopkins had the only goal of the game for the Oilers, who have lost 13 of their last 14 games. Viktor Fasth allowed both goals on 34 shots in the loss. Obviously close isnt good enough, said Nugent-Hopkins. We need to find a way to get that extra one at the right time, make that big play that gets us the lead. We have to find a way to do that. Close doesnt really cut it. These clubs will meet in Edmonton on Friday. Skating on the power play, the Ducks took a 1-0 lead 8:59 into the game. Rickard Rakell had the puck at the left point annd dished it down low for Kyle Palmieri, who quickly sent it to the slot to find Beleskey who was there to finish it off for his 14th of the season.dddddddddddd It was a great pass by Palmy and Raks made a great play down low, said Beleskey. If I get it between the [circles] I have to shoot it and hopefully score. Anaheim made it a 2-0 game halfway through the second as Hampus Lindholm sent a lead pass to Kesler, who skated in on a short break and snapped a wrister into the left corner for his 10th of the season. Just 53 seconds into the third, the Oilers made it a one-goal game when Nugent-Hopkins stole the puck in the slot and quickly wristed it home for his seventh of the year. Andersen was flawless from there, though, as he turned away seven shots in the third to help his team to the win. Game Notes Fridays game starts a five-game road trip for the Ducks ... Anaheim was 1- for-4 on the power play while Edmonton went 0-for-2 ... The Ducks have won eight of 10 and 17 of the last 21 meetings overall. 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