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11/14/2012 10:27 PM EST
No. 10 Florida handles No. 22 Wisconsin 74-56
FLORIDA 74, WISCONSIN 56
By MARK LONG
AP Sports Writer
GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) -- Erik Murphy is no longer just an
Murphy tied a career-high with 24 points days after dealing with
a migraine headache, and No. 10 Florida beat 22nd-ranked
Wisconsin 74-56 on Wednesday night.
The 6-foot-10 power forward made all 10 of his shots, including
several in the post and just two from 3-point range, as the
short-handed Gators enjoyed a double-digit lead most of the
night. He also had seven rebounds.
"That's the one dimension that I told Erik that he needed to add
to his game: being able to catch the ball inside against a
smaller person and score," coach Billy Donovan said. "Tonight he
really did a good job of that."
Murphy became just the fourth player in school history and 18th
in Southeastern Conference history to take at least 10 shots in
a game and make them all.
"Mr. Versatility is what you should call him," teammate Pat
Young said. "He knocked down 3s. He knocked down pull-ups. He
was in the post. He was making moves. He was getting offensive
rebounds and putting them back up. That was just really cool
just seeing him play the way.
"I know he's been able to play like that for a long time. It's
just been a matter of time for him to get the opportunity to
actually do it, and I'm really proud of him."
Mike Rosario added 15 points, four rebounds and four assists for
Florida (2-0), and Kenny Boynton chipped in 10.
Sam Dekker and Jared Berggren had 11 points apiece for Wisconsin
The Gators, playing without point guard Scottie Wilbekin
(suspension) and forward Casey Prather (concussion), essentially
won the game with fast starts in both halves. Florida scored the
first nine points of the game and the first seven after
Murphy was involved in both runs. He made a baseline hook that
seemed to get him started early. He added a jumper, a putback
and a 3-pointer that pushed the lead to 16-6.
The Badgers (1-1), meanwhile, came out flat, missing their first
six shots - including five from behind the arc.
"I don't hang my players out, but the thing that we worked on we
did the opposite," Wisconsin coach Bo Ryan said.
That early hole proved too big to overcome against the
Florida hit 18 of 24 shots (75 percent) in the first 20 minutes
and extended the lead to 19 (50-31) early in the second half.
Boynton converted the 13th four-point play of his career to open
the second half. Murphy followed with a post basket, and then
Boyton added a driving layup.
The Badgers never cut the lead below 12 the rest of the way.
"We're not quite ready for that (kind of comeback) yet," Ryan
Murphy had been questionable to play. He missed practice earlier
this week with a severe headache that caused nausea and
sensitivity to light and sound. Not only did he play, he also
And he didn't miss!
"I felt fine the whole game," said Murphy, who didn't realize he
was perfect from the field. "I just tried to take my shots in
the offense. I didn't even really realize it. I was just trying
After staying behind for a post-game TV interview, Murphy
briefly got the silent treatment from teammates in the locker
room before they mobbed him.
"It was great seeing him actually going out there and perform
with such great confidence and being unstoppable tonight," Young
The only negative for Florida was 20 turnovers. Playing without
Wilbekin, Rosario and Boynton shared ball-handling duties, and
the Gators turned it over 12 times before the break.
But they had enough offense to make the turnovers negligible.
Freshman Michael Frazier II had eight points and five rebounds
for Florida. Fellow forward Will Yeguete finished with nine
points and eight boards. Florida dominated the glass,
outrebounding Wisconsin 40-21.
"This isn't a surprise to basketball people," Ryan said of the
Gators. "They've got different things that can hurt you."
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