GAINESVILLE, Fla. – The No. 13 ranked Georgia Lady Bulldogs basketball team defeated the Florida Gators, 73-69, Sunday afternoon at the Exactech Arena. This win marks Georgia’s ninth-straight win over Florida.
Graduate guard Que Morrison led Georgia with 18 points – 12 coming in the fourth quarter — followed by redshirt senior Malury Bates who notched 13. Bates and Morrison both recorded six rebounds, while Morrison was perfect from the line going 10-for-10.
Georgia is now 12-2 overall and 1-1 in SEC play. Florida is 10-4 and 0-1 in SEC play.
“I’m very proud of their effort. Their fight to come into a tough environment against a rival without one of your starters and figure out how to win after being down by 16 is really incredible,” said head coach Joni Taylor. “Kelly Rae (Finley) has got them playing with confidence and they’re playing really well. This game is always a tough game, no matter what it looks like. It’s always a tough game.”
Sophomore Sarah Ashlee Barker opened the offense for the Bulldogs, scoring a quick 3-point bucket 11 seconds into the first quarter. The Gators’ responded with a 10-2 run to take a 15-5 lead. Georgia went on to score nine more points, including a Morrison steal and fast-break layup to finish out the first quarter down, 25-14.
The Lady Bulldogs’ offense got into a great flow, converting 10 turnovers to go on an 11-0 run. The Georgia defense locked down and held Florida to zero field goals for the last six minutes of the second quarter.
Chloe Chapman lit up the court with an early jumper and assist to Barker, which sparked their momentum. Freshman Jillian Hollingshead cut the lead to single digits with a quick layup and strong defensive turnaround. The Lady Bulldogs ended the half down by a point, 34-33.
A 4-0 run from Morrison gave Georgia its first lead of the game, but the Gators continued to find the rim.
With a minute remaining, Hollingshead advanced on a fastbreak layup, followed by two Barker free throws and a clean jumper from sophomore Zoesha Smith. The offensive effort from the Lady Bulldogs kept the court to a one-point game. Florida held the lead, 50-49.
Georgia’s defense kept Florida from scoring for two-straight minutes. Combined, Morrison and Chapman went on a 5-0 run to retake the lead 63-60. For the final three minutes, things went back-and-forth between the SEC foes. Georgia’s 73-69 win was sealed by two free throws from Morrison.
Next up, the Lady Bulldogs will stay on the road to face Kentucky on January 6th at 7:00 p.m. Coverage will be on SEC Network Plus.