Jenkins' hot hand lifts No. 13 Vandy to 64-60 winMar 3, 2010 - 3:43 AM By MARK LONG AP Sports Writer
GAINESVILLE, Fla.(AP) -- Florida might not be finished at home after all.
John Jenkins scored 18 points, A.J. Ogilvy added 16 and No. 13 Vanderbilt beat the Gators 64-60 Tuesday night, delivering a blow to their NCAA chances.
Jermaine Beal chipped in 13 points for the Commodores, including two free throws that sealed the victory with 6.2 seconds remaining.
Vanderbilt (23-6, 12-3 Southeastern Conference) swept the season series for the first time since 1997 and stayed in the hunt for the league's regular-season title. The Commodores need No. 3 Kentucky to lose its remaining two games to have a chance.
Florida (20-10, 9-6), meanwhile, might need to win at Kentucky on Sunday or win at least one in the conference tournament to make the NCAA field for the first time in three years. If not, the Gators could be back home for another NIT appearance.
"We put our hearts in the game, and that's why it hurts so bad," Florida's Chandler Parsons said. "With everything on the line, we obviously wanted to win this and lock a spot, but our backs are against a wall. We're going to have to see how tough we can be."
Vernon Macklin led the Gators with 21 points and nine rebounds. No other Florida player scored in double digits, the biggest problem for a team that went the final 9:53 without a field goal and had just one point over the final 3:35. Florida missed its final 11 shots.
Florida's backcourt, Erving Walker and Kenny Boynton, was a combined 3 of 24 from the field, including 1 of 9 from 3-point range.
The Gators missed all seven 3-point attempts in the second half and shot just 27 percent from the field.
Nonetheless, coach Billy Donovan's team had several chances to pull off an upset. But Macklin missed a free throw, Walker missed a short jumper and Boynton missed an open 3-pointer with 10 seconds remaining.
"Our backcourt really had a tough time shooting the ball," Donovan said. "But I didn't think they had bad looks."
Vanderbilt, which has won six of its last seven, was much more accurate.
The most significant difference came at the 3-point line, where the Commodores hit 10 of 20 and Florida was just 2 of 13.
Jenkins did most of the damage, hitting 6 of 9 from behind the arc.
"He made some difficult shots," coach Kevin Stallings said. "He made some shots with hands in his face. He is a great shooter. He was in a little bit of a zone tonight. ... We were just trying to move them around to see if we could have the defense lose sight of him."
Florida lost sight of Jenkins early and often.
"They left John open on the perimeter, and when he's open, he's going to knock them down," Ogilvy said. "He had a great shooting night."
One basket the Gators would like to have back was the go-ahead shot. Dan Werner, the team's lone senior who was recognized before what might be his final home game, tipped one through Vandy's hoop with 1:06 to play.
Werner somewhat made amends with a blocked shot on Vandy's next possession, but Florida struggled down the stretch and lost for the fourth time in its last seven games.
"This one was huge," Parsons said. "You win this game, you're in the tournament, so I mean it definitely hurts to fall short, especially on senior night for Dan with everything on the line. We can't hang our heads and let them beat us twice."
Florida, down 12 points early, turned the game around with a 16-2 run midway through the second half. The Gators were up 53-48 with 9:24 remaining.
But then Jenkins took over. He hit a 3 from the corner - Vandy's eighth of the game - then made another one about a minute later to tie it at 55.
"He's a terrific shooter," Donovan said. "You've got to pick your poison."
- NCAA BB
VANDERBILT (13) 64
FLORIDA 60 FINAL
Mar 2 9:06 PM
- NCAA BB
VANDERBILT (13) 38
FLORIDA 35 HALFTIME
Mar 2 7:49 PM
- Virginia Tech guard Jalen Hudson transfers to Florida May 16
- Florida guard Francis-Ramirez transferring after 2 seasons May 4
- New Vanderbilt coach Bryce Drew announces his staff Apr 26
- Florida's Devin Robinson out 4-6 months after foot surgery Apr 21
- Vanderbilt junior center Damian Jones entering NBA Draft Apr 14
- Bryce Drew wants to be 1st to take Vanderbilt to Final 4 Apr 6
- Vandy sophomore guard Wade Baldwin IV entering NBA draft Apr 5
- Vanderbilt using Fogler, not search firm to find new coach Mar 28
- Florida guard Walker plans to transfer after graduation Mar 28
- Stallings gone, Vanderbilt to start search for new coach Mar 27
- After 17 seasons, Stallings' future at Vanderbilt in doubt Mar 16
- Florida's Egbunu to have season-ending thumb surgery Mar 15