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Florida earns split with South Carolina

Feb 10, 2011 - 7:36 AM Columbia, SC (Sports Network) - Chandler Parsons finished with 14 points, 12 rebounds, and eight assists, helping No. 17 Florida handle South Carolina, 79- 60, in SEC action.

Erving Walker sank 4-of-5 three-pointers and scored a team-high 25 points for the Gators (19-5, 8-2 SEC), who were coming off Saturday's win against then- No. 10 Kentucky. Florida had lost to South Carolina by three points last month, but shot better than 55 percent Wednesday to win for the sixth time in its last seven games.

Vernon Macklin added 16 points in the victory.

"Our guys came in here with the understanding of a team that beat us on our home court, and understood that we would have to play well on the road," said Florida head coach Billy Donovan.

Bruce Ellington netted 14 points to pace the Gamecocks (13-9, 4-5), who have lost four of five.

Florida scored the game's first nine points and didn't look back. The Gamecocks drew within two several times later in the first half, including when Sam Muldrow hit a jumper to bring them within 13-11. However, the Gators scored the next seven points to go back up by nine.

They led by two or three possessions until going on an 8-0 run late in the half. Kenny Boynton's layup with 1:34 left ended the burst, which gave Florida a 38-24 lead, though Ellington followed with a three-pointer to bring South Carolina within 11 at the break.

"Even after we cut it, I think it was 11-9 maybe, we had a bunch (of shots) after that didn't go down. It took the wind out of us," said South Carolina head coach Darrin Horn. "We really never recovered from that. Florida did what a very good veteran team does. They took advantage of it and every opportunity."

But the Gamecocks didn't get closer than that in the second half, as Florida was up by double digits for the entire period. Parsons drained a three with under 15 minutes left and Patric Young followed with a dunk to give the Gators a 53-35 advantage, and they led comfortably from there.

Game Notes

Florida claimed its first win in Columbia since 2008...The game was a rare blowout between the teams. Eleven of the previous 13 matchups entering Wednesday had been decided by six points or fewer...South Carolina shot 42 percent.