Gators Streak Comes to an End

The opening coin toss set the tone for Saturday's SEC Championship Game. The No. 2 ranked Alabama Crimson Tide won the toss, and instead of deferring to the second half like they usually do, they took the ball, drove the field for a score and never looked back, defeating the top-ranked Florida Gators, 32-13, to capture the SEC Championship.

Alabama is now on their way to Pasadena for a shot at the national championship, while the Gators who suffered their first loss in 22 games, will likely head to New Orleans for their first Sugar Bowl appearance since 2001.

Alabama's offense led by running back Mark Ingram and quarterback Greg McElroy dominated the Gator defense. The Tide posted nearly 500 yards of total offense and their 32 points outnumbered the previous high allowed by the Gator defense of 20 against Arkansas.

Alabama's Leigh Tiffin kicked a 48-yard field goal on the game's opening drive, and after a three-and-out by the Gators, Ingram who carried 28 times for 113 yards and three touchdowns scored his first of the game with a seven-yard run, giving Bama 9-0 lead. Gator QB Tim Tebow had barely stepped on the field and already faced a two-score deficit.

The Gators got on the board with Caleb Sturgis's 48-yard field goal just before the end of the first quarter that was answered with another Tiffin field goal midway through the second quarter.

The Gator offense finally woke up after a couple of big runs by Tebow before hitting David Nelson for a 23-yard touchdown pass to cut the lead to two. Bama answered with a quick touchdown of their own, but the Gators countered with a field goal and trailed 19-13 at the half.

Florida could have swung momentum in their direction with the second half's opening drive, but Bama forced Tebow and the Gators off the field after three plays. Alabama then covered 74 yards on just five plays to extend their lead to 13 points.

After another scoreless drive by the Gators, Tide QB McElroy orchestrated an 88-yard drive that lasted more than eight minutes to finish of the Gators. McElroy completed 12-of-18 passes for 239 yards and a touchdown.

Down by three scores, the Gators had one final shot, getting inside Bama's red zone with plenty of time left, but while trying to hit Aaron Hernandez in the back corner of the end zone, Tebow throw an interception to Javier Arenas.

Tebow completed 20-of-35 passes for 247 yards and a touchdown. He also carried 10 times for 63 yards. Other than Tebow, the Gators rushed only four times for 25 yards.

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