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Florida 82, Mississippi State 47

The SportsXchange

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Seniors Kenny Boynton and Erik Murphy each scored 18 points, lifting No. 8 Florida to an 82-47 win over Mississippi State at Humphrey Coliseum.

Scottie Wilbekin added 13 points and nine assists for the Gators and Patric Young had 13 points and six rebounds.

The Gators (16-2, 6-0 SEC) won their eighth straight, matching their longest winning streak since starting the 2009-10 season 8-0. Florida also held an opponent under 50 points for the 10th time this season.

Fred Thomas led Mississippi State (7-11, 2-4 SEC) with 19 points. The Bulldogs lost their fourth straight.

After struggling early in its last game against Georgia, Florida got off to a much better start on the road against Mississippi State. The Gators jumped ahead 17-6 early. Boynton and Murphy combined to score 15 of UF's first 17 points.

During the stretch, the Gators shot 60 percent from the field (6 of 10) and 50 percent from 3-point range (3 of 6).

Florida extended its first-half lead to 23 points at 31-8 on a Boynton 3-pointer. But Mississippi State responded with a 7-0 run, highlighted by two inside baskets from freshman Gavin Ware and three free throws from Thomas.

A driving layup from Mississippi State freshman Craig Sword cut Florida's lead to 33-17. But the Gators closed the half with an 8-2 run to lead 41-19 at halftime. Young scored five of the points for Florida on two inside baskets and a free throw. Freshman Michael Frazier added his second 3-pointer of the first half for the Gators.

Florida shot 48.4 percent from the floor in the first half and 35.3 percent from 3-point range. Defensively, the Gators held Mississippi State to 29.2 percent shooting. Mississippi State missed all five of its 3-point attempts.

NOTES: Florida junior forward Casey Prather sat out his fourth straight game with a high ankle sprain. Prather took part in full-speed workouts before the Mississippi State game, but has yet to be cleared for contact. ... Both Mississippi State and Florida coaching staffs wore sneakers to raise awareness for Coaches vs. Cancer.
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