Florida was set for a fabulous finish against Georgetown - until Dan Williams made the wrong move.
With eight seconds left and the score tied at 69, the Gators' senior guard lost the ball while driving toward the basket. Shernard Long then made a layup at the other end of the court as time expired, giving the Hoyas a 71-69 victory in their NIT opening-round game Wednesday night."We did everything beautifully late in the game, except turn the ball over on the last play," Gators coach Billy Donovan.
"Where Dan Williams was going down the lane with eight seconds left in the game was beyond me."
Florida (14-15) had just completed a 12-3 run, tying the game on Kenyan Weaks' 3-pointer with 47 seconds left. But when the ball bounced away from Williams, Damien Bolden picked it up, passed to Boubacar Aw, who spotted Long all alone under the basket. The shot barely beat the buzzer.
"Playing hard is not a problem with my team," Georgetown coach John Thompson said. ". . . We were very lucky to come here and win this game."
Long finished with 28 points as the Hoyas (16-14), who never trailed in the game played at Gainesville, moved into a second-round matchup next week against Georgia Tech, which beat Seton Hall 88-78.
North Carolina-Wilmington is at Wake Forest tonight in the final first-round game.
Other second-round matchups on Monday-Tuesday are: N.C.-Wilmington-Wake Forest winner vs. Vanderbilt; Georgia vs. North Carolina State; Penn State vs. Dayton; Hawaii vs. Gonzaga; Fresno State vs. Memphis; Marquette vs. Auburn; and Minnesota vs. Ala.-Birmingham.
GEORGIA TECH 88, SETON HALL 78: At Atlanta, freshman Dion Glover scored a season-best 33 points as the Yellow Jackets (18-13) took control with a 20-5 run in the second half.
Glover hit six 3-pointers and the Yellow Jackets connected on 15 of 28 3-point shots.
AUBURN 77, SOUTHERN MISSISSIPPI 62: At Auburn, sophomore Mamadou N'diaye scored a career-high 19 points in Auburn's first postseason victory in 10 years.
Scott Pohlman had 14 points, and Doc Robinson added 13 for the Tigers (16-13).
NORTH CAROLINA STATE 59, KANSAS STATE 39: At Raleigh, C.C. Harrison had four second-half 3-pointers in a 20-point performance for the Wolfpack.
Kenny Inge added 13 points and 11 rebounds for N.C. State (17-14), which advanced to the second round of the 32-team tournament for the second straight season.
PENN STATE 82, RIDER 68: Pete Lisicky scored 20 points, and Jarrett Stephens added 19 points for host Penn State (16-12).
MINNESOTA 77, COLORADO STATE 65: At Minneapolis, Sam Jacobson scored 20 points as Minnesota ran away from Colorado State in the second half.
Eric Harris added 19 points for the Gophers (16-15), who opened the second half with a 9-0 run and had another 9-0 run a few minutes later to build a 68-48 lead. Ryan Chilton led the Rams (20-9) with 22 points.
ALABAMA-BIRMINGHAM 93, MISSOURI 86: Fred Williams scored a career-high 23 points in Alabama-Birmingham's victory at Missouri.
Cedric Dixon added 19 points for the Blazers (21-10), and Torrey Ward had 15 points and 11 rebounds.
MEMPHIS 90, BALL STATE 67: Keldrick Bradford scored a career-high 27 points and Omar Sneed added 25 points and 17 rebounds for host Memphis, which held Ball State star Bonzi Wells to a season-low nine points.
MARQUETTE 80, CREIGHTON 68: At Milwaukee, Aaron Hutchins had 19 points and seven assists as Marquette beat Creighton to improve to 19-10.
VANDERBILT 73, ST. BONAVENTURE 61: At Nashville, Dan Langhi scored 16 points as Vanderbilt held off St. Bonaventure after nearly blowing a 13-point lead.
Drew Maddux added 15 points and seven assists for the Commodores (19-12).
DAYTON 95, LONG ISLAND U. 92: Ryan Perryman had 18 points and 23 rebounds as Dayton withstood a 45-point night by Long Island's Charles Jones.
Jones, the nation's top scorer with a 28.4-point average coming into the game, was 18-for-38 from the field for the visiting Blackbirds (21-11). Andy Metzler led Dayton (21-11) with 19 points.
GONZAGA 69, WYOMING 55: At Laramie, Quentin Hall hit four consecutive 3-pointers in a 16-0 run that sparked Gonzaga (24-9).
Wyoming (19-9) took a 48-43 lead with 9:31 left when Gregg Sawyer hit two free throws, but Gonzaga (24-9) went on its big run that ended with 3:31 left.
GEORGIA 100, IOWA 93: At Iowa City, Ray Harrison scored 22 points and G.G. Smith added 18, including four 3-pointers, for Georgia (17-14). Ricky Davis scored 25 points for the Hawkeyes (20-11).
FRESNO STATE 73, PACIFIC 70: Chris Herren had three baskets down the stretch, including the go-ahead score on a putback with 51 seconds remaining, to lead Fresno State (19-11), which snapped Pacific's 30-game home winning streak.
Bulldogs coach Jerry Tarkanian is within one victory of another 20-win season. He has 25 in 26 years of coaching in Division I.
HAWAII 90, ARIZONA STATE 73: At Honolulu, Anthony Carter scored 28 points and Alika Smith added 22 points to pace Hawaii (20-8). Carter hit 11-of-15 shots as the Rainbows were 37-of-67 (55 percent) from the field.
Jeremy Veal led ASU (18-14) with 30 points.