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TAMPA, Fla. – The Ohio men’s basketball team (5-5) returned to action on Wednesday, Dec. 14 in the Victorinox Tampa Tip-Off, falling to Florida (7-4), 82-48, inside Amalie Arena.
Overall, Ohio shot 31.4 percent from the field, 21.4 percent from three and 56.5 percent from the line, while Florida shot 51.9 percent from the field, 45.5 percent from three and 76.2 percent from the line. Florida outrebounded Ohio, 39-26, while the Bobcats forced 14 turnovers and had six steals.
Individually, Ohio was led by freshman guard A. J. Brown (Orlando, Fla.) with 14 points, going 5-of-7 from the field and 20-of-4 from three. graduate student dwight wilson iii (Tallahassee, Fla.) added 13 points and five rebounds, while junior guard jaylin hunter (Manchester, Conn.) scored nine points and dished out three assists. freshman guard elmore james (Cleveland, Ohio) also added five points for the Bobcats.
Florida won the tip and got on the board first with a jumper. Wilson III then tied the game with a layup of his own before the Gators went on to take a 9-2. Wilson III then picked up another jumper to help cut the Florida lead to 11-4 going into the first media timeout. Out of the timeout, a jumper from Hunter helped cut the Ohio deficit to 15-6 with 11:25 remaining in the first half. Out of the timeout, Wilson III scored four-straight points, cutting the Ohio deficit to six, however Florida went on a 5-0 run, giving the Gators an 11-point lead going into the under-eight media timeout. Out of the timeout, Ohio was unable to really generate much offense, going into halftime trailing 42-18.
Overall, Ohio shot 22 percent from the field and were 6-of-9 from the line, while Florida shot 50 percent from the field, were 4-of-11 from three and were 14-of-17 from the line. Florida out rebounded Ohio, 18-16 and had five steals and seven assists to Ohio’s three steals and two assists.
Individually, Wilson III scored 10 points and had three rebounds, while Hunter and A. J. Brown both scored four points.
Florida opened the second half with two free throws, before the Bobcats were able to rattle off five points from senior guard Miles Brown (Rochester, NY), A. J. Brown and Hunter to make deficit 48-23 going into the first media timeout. Out of the timeout, some free throws from A. J. Brown and Wilson III and a layup from freshman forward Adian Hadaway (Lafayette, Ga.) put more points on the board for the Bobcats, however they were unable to stop the Gators from responding, sending the game to the under-12 media timeout with Ohio trailing 61-28. Pull up jumpers from James and freshman guard Ajay Sheldon (Dublin, Ohio) got the Bobcats moving offensively, with Hunter hitting the Bobcats’ first three of the game, cutting the Ohio deficit to 71-39 with just under six minutes to play.
Over the final six minutes, James was able to connect on free throws, while A. J. Brown drained two threes, however the Bobcats would fail by the end of 82-48.
For Florida, Kowacie Reeves scored 20 points and grabbed six rebounds, while Kyle Lofton added 15 points and seven assists.
Up next, the Bobcats are back in Athens on Saturday, Dec. 17 when they host Stetson. Tip-off is set for 2 pm inside the Convocation Center and can be seen on ESPN3.