GAINESVILLE — Nick Calathes scored a season-high 21, including 10 of Florida's final 19, and the Gators held off Georgia Southern 88-81 on Monday night to win their sixth in seven games.
"Big-time players make big-time shots, and he really stepped up for us there when we needed a big shot," said Chandler Parsons, who scored 14 for the Gators.
Calathes' biggest shot came with 5.7 seconds left.
Florida (9-2) led by 19 midway through the second half, but the Eagles (3-6) sliced into the lead with a barrage of free throws and consecutive 3s from Colby Wohlleb and Trumaine Pearson. Sandy Perry's three-point play with 38.6 seconds left cut Florida's lead to 83-80. Then Calathes hit a 3 from the elbow to seal the game.
"He knocked it down," Parsons said. "Nick's a player. Nick knows how to do things. When the ball's in his hands, I'm confident and I think our team is, too."
Antonio Hanson led the Eagles with 16 points and five assists. Julian Allen added 14 points and seven rebounds and Sandy Perry scored 13.