Cats Tebow-ned: Florida 45 Kentucky 37

LEXINGTON, Ky -- The # 8 Kentucky Wildcats' temporary perch alone atop the SEC East Standings lasted only a couple of hours, as Tim Tebow and the # 15 Florida Gators defeated the Cats 45-37. Tebow passed for a career high four touchdowns and ran for a fifth touchdown in the victory. The loss snapped a two-game losing streak for the Gators.

It was a game of opportunities, and the Florida Gators maximized theirs, while the Cats managed to let a couple slip away. It was enough.

Kentucky opened the scoring on its initial possession. The Wildcats held Florida on a three-and-out first possession, then mounted a nine play, 78 yard drive that culminated in a 33-yard Woodson to Dicky Lyons touchdown pass. Florida would respond with two consecutive touchdowns in the first quarter and Kentucky would trail the remainder of the game.

Although Kentucky outgained Florida, 511-427 yards, had more first downs than Florida, 29-21, won the time of possession, and had no turnovers, the Gators just made every big play when they needed to make them. The Cats had a nine play, 47-yard drive in the first quarter and appeared about to convert either a touchdown or a field goal and break a 7-7 tie, when Florida managed back-to-back sacks. The losses put Kentucky in a long field goal attempt, and Lones Seiber's 48-yard attempt missed just wide left.

Florida capitalized on the miss, and the momentum, with a quick-strike, two-play drive that ended with a Tebow to Louis Murphy 66-yard touchdown bomb.

Again, Kentucky would attempt a response, but come up empty. This time, a 12-play, 34 yard, 5:34 drive would end on downs and turn the ball back to the Gators. And such was the story of the game for the Wildcats.

With under two minutes to play in the first half, Kentucky narrowed the gap to four on a 27-yard Lones Seiber field goal, and appeared ready to go to halftime trailing only 14-10. Florida again made a big play, however, using a 61-yard Brandon James kickoff return to kickstart a ten play, 38-yard touchdown to give the Gators a 21-10 lead at intermission.

The game featured a failed onside kick by Kentucky giving Florida possession inside the 40. The Gators capitalized, this time with a 21-yard field goal. The Cats shanked a 21-yard punt giving Florida possession on the Wildcat side of the field. This time the Gators capitalized with a touchdown. And so it went.

Tebow led the Gators with an 18-26, 256 yards, four touchdown, no interception performance. He also added another 78 yards on 15 carries and one touchdown.

The loss spoiled an outstanding statistical day for Kentucky quarterback Andre Woodson. Woodson attained career high numbers in completions and pass attempts, throwing for 35-50, 414 yards, five touchdowns and no interceptions. Unlike last week against LSU, though, the Cats offensive line could not keep the Gators out of the backfield, sacking Woodson six times. Lyons also had a career day, catching eight passes for 124 yards and three touchdowns.

Kentucky fell to 6-2 (2-2) with the loss, while Florida moves to 5-2 (3-2) with the win. With South Carolina losing today to Vanderbilt, Kentucky temporarily occupied first place in the SEC Eastern Division by itself, as the only SEC Eastern Division team with one loss.

Kentucky will face Mississippi State next weekend in Lexington, while Florida travels again to Athens, Ga. to face the Georgia Bulldogs.

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