BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — Sha Brooks hit a driving layup with five seconds left, capping a comeback from an 11-point second-half deficit as Florida beat Alabama-Birmingham 77-75 Wednesday night.
Brooks had 15 points for the Gators (7-1), who won their seventh straight. Florida erased a 60-49 deficit with a 20-0 run then twice let the Blazers tie before Brooks' winning shot.
"This was definitely a wild ride, and we're just fortunate to come out with a win because this was one of those ball games where I felt UAB outplayed us in the first half," UF coach Amanda Butler said. "We did not set the tone and we were sluggish. They were energetic. Where they were making plays, we weren't. When you play poorly and you're still able to win, you'll take it."
Sharielle Smith had 12 points and seven rebounds for Florida. The Blazers' Britany Jones scored 17 of her career-high 28 in the first half, helping UAB take a 38-34 halftime lead.
Lonnika Thompson kicked off the Gators' run with a 3-pointer from the top left of the arc, and freshman Trumae Lucas followed with the second of four UF 3s during the spurt. Down 71-62, the Blazers went on a 9-0 run capped by Fatiha Salaam's free throw with 2:22 left.
Brooks put Florida back ahead with a driving layup, and Marshae Dotson hit another for a 75-71 lead with 1:08 left. Salaam sank a 3-pointer in front of the Blazers bench with 51 seconds left, and Jones tied it at 75 with a free throw with 32.2 seconds left.
After a UAB foul, Florida inbounded to Brooks, who slipped into the paint and converted. Jones' long 3-point attempt bounced off the front of the rim as the horn sounded.
FSU 73, PENN ST. 60: Jacinta Monroe had 18 points to lead the host Seminoles (6-2), who never trailed in the ACC-Big Ten Challenge game to bounce back from a loss to Valparaiso.
TAMPA 74, WARNER 41: Angela Guiu had 14 points, Sarah Wickham 13 and Gianna Messina 12 as the host Spartans (7-1) won their sixth straight and gave coach Tom Jessee his 299th career victory.
NO. 1 UCONN 96, HOLY CROSS 37: Freshman Caroline Doty scored 11 and extended her school-record streak of made 3-pointers to 10 to lead the host Huskies (6-0), who scored 90 or more for the fifth straight game.
NO. 2 UNC 72, NO. 18 OHIO ST. 63: Jessica Breland scored 29, and the visiting Tar Heels (9-0) held the Buckeyes (6-2) scoreless for more than nine minutes of the second half in the ACC-Big Ten Challenge.
NO. 6 OKLA. 69, CREIGHTON 49: All-America center Courtney Paris needed a late surge to record her 99th straight double double with 11 points and 16 rebounds, and the host Sooners (5-2) overcame a lethargic effort.
NO. 14 AUBURN 95, N.C. A&T 74: DeWanna Bonner had 26 points and 11 rebounds, and four players scored in double figures for the host Tigers (8-0).
GA. TECH 70, NO. 21 MICH. ST. 57: Alex Montgomery had 20 points, and the host Yellow Jackets overcame a 12-point deficit to upset the Spartans (6-2) in the ACC-Big Ten Challenge.
NO. 24 PITT 66, DUQUESNE 47: Kate Popovec scored 15 and shot 7-of-7 from the field, and the visiting Panthers (5-1) opened the second half with a 15-4 run.