No. 16 Florida nips No. 15 Memphis 77-75

Florida guard Scottie Wilbekin tries to secure the ball under pressure from Memphis’ Michael Dixon Jr.

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Florida guard Scottie Wilbekin tries to secure the ball under pressure from Memphis’ Michael Dixon Jr.

NEW YORK — Casey Prather scored 22, including Florida's last eight of the game, and the 16th-ranked Gators beat No. 15 Memphis 77-75 in the Jimmy V Classic at Madison Square Garden on Tuesday night.

Prather made two free throws with 27 seconds left to give Florida (8-2) a 77-73 lead. Shaq Gooodwin made two free throws with 19 seconds left to bring Memphis (7-2) within 77-75.

Florida's Scottie Wilbekin missed the front end of a 1-and-1 with 17 seconds left, giving the Tigers a chance for the tie or win.

After a Memphis timeout with 10.8 seconds to go, Joe Jackson drove to the basket, but his shot was partially blocked, the ball was knocked out near midcourt, and time expired.

Dorian Finney-Smith added 14 points for the Gators and Wilbekin and Michael Frazier II had 11 each.

Jackson had 17 points for Memphis, which had a six-game winning streak snapped. Geron Johnson had 13 and Chris Crawford and David Pellom both had 12.

UC wins defensive battle

NEW YORK — It was impossible not to think of the Big East when former conference members Cincinnati and Pittsburgh met in the Jimmy V Classic at Madison Square Garden on Tuesday night.

The teams didn't have to stage an old-fashioned defensive battle with plenty of missed shots and key rebounds.

But they did.

Titus Rubles' rebound basket with 4.2 seconds to play gave Cincinnati a 44-43 victory over previously unbeaten Pittsburgh.

It was appropriate that the winning points came on a missed shot in a game in which neither team shot 38 percent from the field.

"I thought it was beautiful," Cincinnati coach Mick Cronin said when somebody describe the game as ugly.

"I don't know what game you were watching," said Justin Jackson, who led the Bearcats with 12 points.

The Bearcats (8-2) had lost two straight, the last one 64-47 to crosstown rival Xavier on Saturday night.

"You've got to be able to win these kind of games," Cronin said. "Our guys were so upset at what happened Saturday night, we had guys who couldn't eat. I was a psychiatrist more than a coach the last few days."

Talib Zanna had 12 points for the Panthers (10-1), one of 14 Division I teams to start the day unbeaten.

No. 16 Florida nips No. 15 Memphis 77-75 12/18/13 [Last modified: Wednesday, December 18, 2013 12:46am]

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