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Florida notebook: Gators can't convert their last-gasp opportunities

Published: Friday, July 31 2015 12:06 a.m. MDT

OKLAHOMA CITY — BYU's Jimmer Fredette told Florida's Chandler Parsons before the game Thursday he didn't want him to make any game-winning shots.

In a 99-92 double-overtime loss to BYU in the first round of the West Regional, Parsons had two potential game-winning plays in regulation and the first overtime. The first bounded harmlessly away and the second was a harried pass from Kenny Boynton as the shot clock wound down.

"I barely missed them, Jimmer," Parsons said during a late-game break.

"We had our chances and certainly BYU had a chance to put us away midway through the second half," said Florida coach Billy Donovan. "Our guys wouldn't allow it to happen and they kept battling and fighting."

The intense 50-minute battle left Donovan wondering what BYU might have left for Kansas State on Saturday after crediting BYU's depth as the reason the Cougars outlasted his squad.

"It will be interesting to see how they can come back physically because I think of even all our SEC games, this was the most physical game we played all year long," Donovan said.

The Gators suffered big time when top scorer Kenny Boynton fouled out early in the second overtime. Guarding Fredette took its toll.

"Fredette is a great player," said Boynton. "They actually run everything through Fredette and I was tired, you know, late in the game. Every play he either passes or runs through to get the ball. He's a very good player."

Donovan said the biggest challenge for his squad was when BYU subbed the last two minutes and took Fredette out, sat him and he didn't have to play defense.

"They just utilized him on offense, where as I think with Boynton and Ervin Walker, having to guard Fredette, Michael Loyd and Jackson Emery, all their perimeter guys," he added. "It was really those two guys playing both ends of the floor."

"It's hard to ask those guys to shoot at the level you want them to, where a guy like Fredette is resting and they're using some of the other guys to really play defense. That's what makes BYU a good team — they have depth," said Donovan.

Florida out-rebounded the Cougars 45-33 and had a 20-10 advantage on the offensive end. Boynton led the Gators with 27 points with 5-of-10 shooting from beyond the arc. Parsons had a game-high 10 rebounds.

GATOR TRACKS: The last time Florida had an NCAA tourney overtime was March 15, 2002, in a loss to Creighton 83-82 ... Parsons had his fifth double-double with 20 points and 10 rebounds. ... The loss ended Florida's streak of 12 straight tournament wins. ... The Gators missed 11 of their first 15 3-point shots and had seven turnovers in the first eight minutes.

e-mail: dharmon@desnews.com

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