No. 10 Florida too much for Missouri men's basketball

Saturday, January 19, 2013 | 3:05 p.m. CST; updated 6:40 p.m. CST, Saturday, January 19, 2013
Florida's Erik Murphy (33) blocks Missouri guard Jabari Brown (32) as teammate Florida Gators guard Scottie Wilbekin (5) watches during the second half of a college basketball game Saturday in Gainesville, Fla.

It took four seconds for Florida to show that it came to play.

Florida guard Scottie Wilbekin fielded the tip-off and dashed straight to the bucket for an easy layup, establishing a lead that Missouri never even came close to overcoming as the game progressed.

Missouri lost its second Southeastern Conference game, blown out 83-52 Saturday afternoon by No. 10 Florida at the Stephen C. O' Connell Center in Gainesville, Fla.

"Our emotions are not right," Missouri head coach Frank Haith said in a post-game interview on KTGR. "We got to do a better job of handling adversity. Within the game, I thought we weren't able to stay in the present. We let things to affect us in a negative way. When you're playing against a good team like this, we cannot allow that to happen."

Missouri's defense was porous.

Missouri allowed Florida to score at will. The Gators made 59.3 percent of their shots. Forward Erik Murphy led the Gators with 15 points.

At one point in the second half, Missouri trailed 34 points.

Missouri could not catch up; its offense was stagnant.

The Florida defense smothered point guard Phil Pressey all afternoon. Pressey only had two points, making only one of his seven shots. His one basket came off a floater with 16:38 left in the first half.

Even Pressey's passes were all heavily contested. Pressey had a career-high 10 turnovers, topping his eight-turnover performance against Louisville earlier in the season.

Guard Jabari Brown led the team in scoring with 16 points, but shot inefficiently. Brown was 5-for-18 from the field.

"We took some really bad shots," Haith said. "They sped us up a little bit."

The Missouri offense could not even produce in transition.

Missouri had 21 turnovers in the game and forced 16 turnovers from Florida. The problem was Missouri could not capitalize on most of its opportunities.

In the first half, Missouri guard Earnest Ross stole the ball from forward Patric Young, only to have it swiped away by forward Will Yeguete as Ross moved down court.

Injuries added to Missouri's problems. Forward Laurence Bowers was dressed in a suit and tie on the sideline, still out with a sprained right knee. Ross was bothered by his back after a bad fall in the Georgia game Wednesday.

The only bright spot for Missouri was guard Keion Bell, who scored 14 points on 5-of-6 attempts. However, he had to leave the game with a sprained ankle halfway through the second half.

"He was the one aggressive guy we had on our team," Haith said. "… When we're down on numbers like that, it's really hard to play."

Haith and his players will have until Tuesday to rest up. Missouri will face South Carolina at 6 p.m. at Mizzou Arena.

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