College basketball: Florida wins 15th straight

Florida forward Dorian Finney-Smith drove toward the lane as Alabama guard Levi Randolph chased him during the second half.
Phil Sandlin/AP
Florida forward Dorian Finney-Smith drove toward the lane as Alabama guard Levi Randolph chased him during the second half.

Third-ranked Florida has won with defense most of the season.

The Gators showed Saturday they can pull out games on the other end of the court, too.

Scottie Wilbekin scored 16 points, leading all five starters in double figures, and Florida beat Alabama, 78-69, in Gainesville, Fla., for its 15th straight victory.


The Gators handled the Tide (9-14, 3-7 Southeastern) for the second time in 16 days and extended a school record for consecutive home wins to 29.

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‘‘If you play defense the way we did tonight, you’re not going to win,’’ coach Billy Donovan said. ‘‘Thank God we had some offense today that helped us.’’

Florida (21-2, 10-0) shot a blistering 62 percent from the field and finished with a season-high 22 assists.

The Gators trailed by 7 late in the first half before taking over the game in the paint and in transition. That opened up the perimeter for Wilbekin and Michael Frazier II.

Wilbekin was 3-for-5 shooting from behind the arc, and Frazier was 3 for 8 from 3-point range.


Frazier finished with 14 points, joining Wilbekin, Casey Prather (15), Will Yeguete (12), and Patric Young (11) in double figures.

‘‘We have a balanced team, and anyone can beat you on any given night,’’ Prather said.

Texas Tech 65, Oklahoma State 61 — Jaye Crockett had 21 points and 12 rebounds to lead the host Red Raiders (12-11, 4-6 Big 12) to an upset of the No. 19 Cowboys (16-7, 4-6).

 Near the end of the contest, Oklahoma State guard Marcus Smart shoved a fan underneath the basket.

The man appeared to say something to Smart, who then shoved him with two hands. Smart was called for a technical foul but was not ejected.


Wichita State 82, Northern Iowa 73 — Tekele Cotton scored 18 points and the fourth-ranked Shockers outlasted the host Panthers (11-13, 5-7 Missouri Valley).

Wichita State (25-0, 12-0) used a 12-1 run early in the second half to salt the game away and become the first team to open 25-0 since Memphis won its first 26 games in 2007-08.

San Diego State 73, Nevada 58 — Xavier Thames scored 17 points as the No. 5 Aztecs (21-1, 10-0 Mountain West) topped the visiting Wolfpack (12-12, 7-4) to tie a school record with their 20th straight win.

SMU 76, Cincinnati 55 — Nick Russell had 15 points and the Mustangs stayed undefeated at home by ending the seventh-ranked Bearcats’ 15-game winning streak.

After Cincinnati cut the gap to 48-41 in the second half, SMU (19-5, 8-3 American Athletic Conference) used an 11-0 run to pull away

Sean Kilpatrick scored 22 points for Cincinnati (22-3, 11-1).

Kansas 83, West Virginia 69 — Andrew Wiggins had 19 points, Roxbury native Wayne Selden had 17, and the eighth-ranked Jayhawks (18-5, 9-1 Big 12) fended off the visiting Mountaineers (14-10, 6-5 Big 12).

Iowa 85, Michigan 67 — Roy Devyn Marble scored 22 of his 26 points in the first half, and the No. 17 Hawkeyes topped the 10th-ranked Wolverines in Iowa City.

Iowa (18-6, 7-4 Big Ten) has now beaten two AP top-10 teams in the regular season for the first time since 1990-91.

Caris LeVert scored 22 points for the Wolverines (17-6, 9-2), who have lost two of three after starting 8-0 in the Big Ten.

Marble was 6 of 9 from 3-point range in the first half — more threes than the Hawkeyes made as a team in each of the last five games.

Saint Louis 65, La Salle 63 — Jordair Jett scored 19 of his game-high 25 points in the second half, including the winning layup with four seconds left, as the 13th-ranked Billikens (22-2, 9-0 Atlantic 10) extended their school-record winning streak to 16 games with a victory over the Explorers (12-11, 4-5) in Philadelphia.

Kansas State 74, Texas 57 — Marcus Foster scored a career-high 34 points on 13-of-16 shooting and the host Wildcats ended the No. 15 Longhorns’ seven-game winning streak.

Kansas State (16-7, 6-4 Big 12) also extended its home winning streak to 12 games.

Isaiah Taylor had 17 points for Texas (18-5, 7-3), which was blitzed by the Wildcats’ 18-4 run to begin the game.

Iowa State 84, TCU 69 — Melvin Ejim drained 20 of 24 shots in scoring a Big 12-record 48 points and grabbed a career-high 18 rebounds to lead the No. 16 Cyclones past the Horned Frogs (9-13, 0-10) in Ames, Iowa.

A 6-foot-6-inch senior, Ejim scored 20 straight points for Iowa State (18-4, 6-4) during one stretch in the second half.

Kentucky 69, Mississippi State 59 — Freshman Julius Randle had 16 points and seven rebounds, and the 18th-ranked Wildcats (18-5, 8-2 Southeastern Conference) ended the first half on a 19-6 run in a win over the host Bulldogs (13-10, 3-7).

Virginia 64, Georgia Tech 45 — The No. 20 Cavaliers held the host Yellow Jackets (12-12, 3-8 Atlantic Coast Conference) without a field goal for the final 9:51 while outscoring Georgia Tech, 22-1, to secure their seventh straight win.

Malcolm Brogdon led Virginia (19-5, 10-1) with 14 points and 11 rebounds.

Oklahoma 88, Baylor 72 — Isaiah Cousins scored 15 of his career-high 21 points in the second half, helping the No. 21 Sooners (18-6, 7-4 Big 12) win at home.

Isaiah Austin scored a season-high 21 points for the Bears (14-9, 2-8), who lost for the seventh time in eight games.

Memphis 60, Gonzaga 54 — Chris Crawford and Michael Dixon Jr. both had 11 points, and the No. 24 Tigers (18-5) scored the final 10 points of the game to defeat the No. 23 Bulldogs (21-4) in Memphis.

Pittsburgh 62, Virginia Tech 57 — Cameron Wright scored 4 of his 18 points in the second overtime to lead the 25th-ranked Panthers in Pittsburgh.

Pitt (20-4, 8-3 Atlantic Coast Conference) reached 20 wins for the 13th straight season.


West Virginia 84, Kansas 44 — Bria Holmes poured in a career-high 31 points, Taylor Palmer added 13 to surpass the 1,000-point mark for her career, and the No. 17 Mountaineers (20-3, 9-2 Big 12) thrashed the visiting Wildcats (9-13, 3-8).