GAINESVILLE, Fla.: Aliyah Boston had 13 points and a season-high 19 rebounds for her 14th consecutive double-double, and top-ranked South Carolina beat Florida 62-50 on Sunday to extend its winning streak to eight.
Zia Cooke added 11 points for the Gamecocks (20-1, 8-1 Southeastern Conference), who won their 14th in a row against the Gators (15-6, 5-3).
Florida’s five-game winning streak ended in lopsided fashion.This one was essentially over after a dominant first quarter.
South Carolina outscored Florida 19-3 in the opening 10 minutes.It was the Gamecocks’ best first quarter of the season and the third time they have allowed just three points in any period.
The Gators, coming off a one-week layoff, looked timid from the opening tip.They rushed shots, missed open looks and provided little resistance on the defensive end.Florida missed 18 of 19 shots in the opening quarter, including all three from behind the arc.Making matters worse, the Gators were 1 of 4 from the free-throw line.
The Gamecocks were significantly more efficient, shooting 45.5% from the floor and making 7 of 8 from the charity stripe while building a double-digit lead.
Boston was key to the hot start.She had four points, seven boards and an assist in the first to get coach Dawn Staley’s team going on the road.
The Gamecocks extended their lead to 33-13 at the half and were up 45-17 late in the third quarter before the Gators seemingly woke up.
Florida ended the quarter with a 13-3 run and added a three-point play to open the fourth, cutting the huge lead to 48-35.But South Carolina held on down the stretch.
Kiki Smith led the Gators with 22 points.Jordan Merritt had seven points and seven rebounds.
South Carolina is sure to maintain its spot atop T he Associated Press’ Top 25 women’s college basketball poll.
South Carolina: Staley has another team capable of winning it all.The Gamecocks can score inside and out, with Boston being the heart and soul of the program.A national player of the year candidate, Boston is now averaging 17.0 points and 11.9 rebounds.
Florida: The Gators had shown promise in recent weeks, so much so that some started to wonder if athletic director Scott Stricklin would remove the interim coaching tag from Kelly Rae Finley and give her a long-term deal.Florida was coming off consecutive wins against top-25 teams, beating Kentucky and LSU last week.
But it looked outmatched early against South Carolina.
South Carolina hosts Alabama on ThursdayThe Gamecocks have won 19 straight in the series.
Florida hosts No.4 Tennessee on Thursday.The Gators are 4-54 all-time against the Lady Vols.
More AP college basketball: https://apnews.com/Collegebasketball and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25
Disclaimer: This post has been auto-published from an agency feed without any modifications to the text and has not been reviewed by an editor
Read all the Latest News, Breaking News and Coronavirus News here.