Florida got its expected win over Southern on Monday night, and by a 67-53 count.
But that wasn't the most important takeaway from the often ugly game, thanks to an injury to promising point guard Kasey Hill.
Hill suffered an ankle injury early in the second half, was helped off the floor, and did not return.
Without Hill, Florida was outscored 33-29 by Southern over the game's final 18 minutes, and failed to put together much in the way of cohesive offense. With Hill out, Scottie Wilbekin suspended, and Eli Carter still very much a work in progress, the Gators didn't have a point guard for that stretch, and it showed, as they took quick threes and struggled to get good looks without a penetrator, one Michael Frazier II three Billy Donovan somewhat miffed.
Gators coach Billy Donovan loves 3-pointers -- just not that one by Michael Frazier II. "Are you f---ing nuts."— Mark Long (@APMarkLong) November 19, 2013
Michael Frazier takes a three early in the shot clock with a 19-point lead and 3:54 left to play. Donovan screams, "Do you see the score?"— Cody Jones (@CJonesScout) November 19, 2013
But the go-to stats in the event of point guard peril were actually very good: Eight of the 10 field goals Florida made during its Hill-less stretch in the second half were assisted, and the Gators coughed up just three turnovers.
Florida also got balanced scoring on the night, with six Gators, Hill included, managing at least eight points. Patric Young led the way with 12 points, and added six rebounds, while Casey Prather scored 10 points and pulled down nine rebounds despite making just two of his 10 shots and spending plenty of time on the bench with foul trouble.
Frazier added nine points, all from three three-pointers, while DeVon Walker put in 10 points, establishing a new career high that doubled his previous tally.
Florida did a fine job of silencing Southern shooter Malcolm Miller, who managed just two points, but yielded often to Calvin Godfrey, who put up 18 points and nine rebounds despite relatively good interior defense from Young.
The Gators improved to 3-1 on the year with the win, but Hill's status becomes the hot topic now. Florida's got two more games without Wilbekin to weather, and Hill's absence would make them adventures on the offensive end.