Cold shooting, Gators' Nelson send Tigers reeling

Brett Nelson scored 25 points on 7-of-11 shooting from beyond the three-point arch as No. 4 Florida handled LSU 70-53 Tuesday night in the Pete Maravich Assembly Center. <br><br> The Tigers' (12-6, 1-5 SEC) offensive woes continued as LSU managed just 22-of-66 shots for a meek 33.3-percent from the floor. Coach John Brady's team converted just 5-of-27 from beyond the arch.

"Again, the thing that has plagued us the last three or four games has been inconsistency on offense," Brady said. "I don't fault or effort or execution. I thought our team played hard, honestly. It was a much harder fought game than the final scored indicated."

 

Nelson started slowly scoring just nine points in the first half. However, the Florida senior exploded for 16 points on 4-of-6 shooting from three-point land providing the necessary offense to push past the homestanding Tigers.

 

"We couldn't guard Florida on everything," Brady said. "We had to give up something. Nelson was 7-of-27 on three-point shots in five previous SEC games; tonight he was 7-of-11 against us."

 

Brady said the plan was to stop the Gators' (17-2, 6-0) big man, Matt Bonner, which they did holding the senior center to three points.

 

"Our goal was to take Bonner out of the game and we did that," Brady said. "We did some things okay."

 

LSU defended better than in the past holding Florida to 43.4-percent shooting (23-of-53) from the floor. However, the offensive slump continues as LSU can't seem to buy a basket.

 

Collis Temple III led all Tiger scorers with 21 points on 8-of-17 shooting. Ronald Dupree added 20 points connecting on 10-of-18 shots. The story was what the rest of the team did, hitting just 4-of-31 shots for a combined 12 points.

 

"Collis played excellent, but that is one time," Brady said. "That is what I am eluding to when I say we have no consistency on offense.

"I really don't know what is wrong. The quality of shot is good. But beyond that, I do not know why we can't step up and make a shot."

 

The Tigers came out strong taking a 9-4 lead with a Dupree dunk with 14:43 to go in the first half. Florida then managed a 20-6 run over the next nine minutes holding a 24-12 lead with 5:45 left. LSU did close it to 33-21 by the half though.

 

The Tigers battled throughout the early minutes of the second half. Back-to-back three-point baskets by Temple at the 14:40 and 13:13 marks in the second half closed the Gator lead to just five points, 41-36.

 

The closest LSU came again was trailing by seven, 51-44 with 6:03 to go in regulation. Florida outscored LSU 10-2 over the next four minutes to put the game away.

 

Torris Bright was 0-for-6 from the floor scoring no points. It was the first time in his career the Slidell senior was held scoreless.

 

A made Temple free throw with 51 seconds left in the game gave the Baton Rouge senior 1000 total points for his career.

 

Things get no easier for the Tigers or Brady, who has been fighting bad case of the flu for the past week. LSU travels to Alabama on Saturday.

"I'm not doing real good," Brady said about the flu. "I can't seem to shake it. The only way to get rid of it is with rest and I am not getting a lot of that right now."


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