Thursday night in Tampa, the No. 2 seed Florida Gators defeated No. 15 seed UC-Santa Barbara, 79-51. The Gators will face No. 7 UCLA in the third round.
Florida came out with guns blazing, shooting 58 percent in the first half and 55 percent for the entire game. UF could have scored more, as they were able to get in the paint when they wanted too, but settled instead for 8-23 shooting from 3-point range. UF scored 34 points in the paint, compared to 18 for UCSB.
Erving Walker and Kenny Boynton led the Gators in scoring, with 18 and 13 points, respectively. Chandler Parsons had the most complete game with 10 points, 10 assists and 7 rebounds. Parsons only played 27 minutes, as Billy Donovan began thinking about Saturday's game at halftime. Alex Tyus and Vernon Macklin were held to about 20 minutes, with Macklin scoring 10 and Tyus getting 8.
Florida will play UCLA on Saturday at 2:45pm on CBS. No. 7 UCLA looked like they would cruise against No. 10 Michigan State, but instead had to hold on for a 78-76 victory. The Bruins allowed 52 second half points as the Spartans furiously rallied from a 42-24 halftime deficit.