Tag Archives: Kenny Boynton

Senior Night

Billy Donovan, Gators head coach.

Billy Donovan, Gators head coach. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Last home game of the season, Gator Nation!

Kenny Boyton, Erik Murphy and Mike Rosario suit up for the last time in a Gator uniform at home. Most of us thought Boynton would have been gone two seasons ago. Heck, most of thought Erik Murphy was done after breaking into a car after his Sophomore year. Come to think of it…after last season who’d of thought Mike Rosario would even be seeing the court right now.

This may not have been the greatest Gator season ever, but it sure came pretty close because of this group. They have become the face of unselfish play and hard-nose defense. True they have had their moments of lackluster play, but they each bought into what Billy Donovan was selling and it has generated 23 Victories so far this season. Collectively tonight would be their 100th Victory if they beat the Commodores, two SEC Championships, four NCAA tourney berths to go with two straight trips to the Elite Eight….and 3,400 points between them.

More than likely we will take a pretty big hit this year when they and Patric Young leave for the NBA or other ventures. We do have them right now and it has been a super season to watch college basketball. I don’t think anyone believes that we can win the NCAA Championship and to talk of it now is ridiculous, but Billy is working them hard to be the best prepared come tournament time. We’ve got our team finally healthy at the right time and these next two games will be critical to the momentum development before the tournaments begin. You can almost taste the anticipation.

Vandy will look to spoil the night tonight and they have won three straight and hit 10+ three-pointers in those games. Our defense needs to ratchet up a new level. We’ve been a bit lazy on the floor…especially against a ‘Bama team that was close to knocking us down (Thank you Casey Prather!). It should be an exciting finish to the season. Are you ready for it Gator Nation?

Game time is 8pm and you can stream the game on ESPN3 if you aren’t in the South or don’t have the SEC Network.

Big plug for the Lady Gator Lax squad. They are now 8-0 after pummeling Loyola last night. Second-ranked and devastating. Woo Hoo!

Go Gators!

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Mizzou in Waiting

Mizzou Arena from the North facade.

Mizzou Arena from the North facade. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A great test tonight, Gator Nation.

On the road again at Missouri which promises to be more exciting than our game at Auburn. Missouri has been the tale of two teams. On the road they have been completely demolished (including an 83-52 shellacking at Gainesville). At home it is quite a different story. They are 14-0 at Mizzou Arena and completely dominated Ole Miss, Miss State, Alabama and Vandy. “What?!?” I hear you say. “So have we?!?” Of course, we have, but that is not the point. The point is that we are facing a much different team than we did a month ago at home. One that could provide a much needed test for our Gator basketball team.

Last time we played they had just lost Laurence Bowers who was the heart and soul of their team. He’s back this time around and they have an explosive offense to go with it. They have six players averaging double figures. They are also #2 in the nation of rebounding. It is also unlikely that their point guard, Paul Pressey, will have the same 10 turnovers he did last time….though I’m still counting on Scottie¬†Wilbiken to shut him down.¬† It’s going to be a closer game and it’s going to be good. We need a battle on the road to test our mettle and to really see if the Gators learned something from that Arkansas game. Mizzou is going to come out with guns a blazin’ and they are going to try and amp up the crowd with some high intensity offense. It will be good to see how the Gator defense can react to an initial blitz and if they can completely shut them down again.

I don’t really like close games any more than the next Gator fanatic, but the truth is leading up to the SEC and NCAA tournament, we need some on the court tests away from home. It might cause misfirings of some pacemakers, but when it is all said and done, I believe this Gator team will prevail. They’ve come a very long way this year and have matured quite well as the season rolled along.

Now, it must be said, that being without Yeugete tonight will be difficult. Missouri brings Alex Oriakhi in with almost 9 rebounds a game to go with his 6’9″, 260lb frame. Will Yuegete is a great equalizer there. We’ve seen Casey Prather and Michael Frazier II step up in recent games. Tonight will be a much interesting assignment for both. They do not have to have monster nights, but if Prather can battle down low and grab some more rebounds and MFII can nail 2 or 3 three-point shots, then they will add a consistency to an already steadily performing team. It’s not about being all-stars…it’s all about team contribution and working together. This has been one of the best seasons ever to watch because this Gator team has serious chemistry and really likes going out and lacing them up and getting on the court. If someone is down, another steps up. It is great to watch. Who would have ever thought we would have Kenny Boynton around 13 points per game instead of 16…and still clobbering teams. The fact is he doesn’t have to do it alone anymore. His assists per game are up and he is still a legitimate threat from the outside. Just having him on the floor puts enormous pressure on the opposing team. An opponent, quite frankly, has to account for every Gator on the floor including those off the bench. Plain and simple.

It’s a late game tonight, but well worth staying up and watching….or at least put it on the DVR and watch it tomorrow. This has been an exciting season and one you will want to see through to the end.

Go Gators!

Gator Hoops Against UCF Today

Gator

Gator (Photo credit: Mamboman1)

Black Friday hoops action, Gator Nation.

A big scare in our last Gator basketball game when Kenny Boynton went down with an apparent ankle injury, but fortunately for him it was not as serious as first believed. He did miss his FIRST practice ever in a Gator jersey the following day. Pretty impressive considering the amount he has played in his four years as a Gator. I’m currently watching the first half of the game on ESPN3 and he does not appear to be suffering any ill effects, but the big surprise is Scottie Wilbiken who has lit up UCF for 3 treys so far and 11 points before half.

This is a big retribution game for us as UCF marked one of our six losses two years ago for a senior-driven team that came within 4 minutes of the Final Four. UCF is led by Isiah Sykes and Keith Clanton at 17 points each. They have been competitive all season against their opponents. We share common games with Savannah State and Middle Tennessee. MTSU gave us our most difficult game this year so far and actually beat UCF by 6 points. Both teams won their respective games against Savannah State. UCF is very physical, but are a streaky offensive team. If our defense shows up like it has—especially in this first half—we should fare well against them.

This starts a string of very competitive games for us against Marquette, at FSU and at Arizona who is currently ranked #10. This team is starting very well and should progress nicely with a very deep bench and what is surprisingly some of the best defense our Gators have played in awhile. If you miss this game, check out the replay on ESPN3. ‘Nuff said.

Go Gators!