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Loyola-Chicago delivers No. 5 Florida its 3rd loss

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Photographs by AP/RON IRBY

Loyola-Chicago guard Cameron Satterwhite (23) dribbles up the court against Florida guard KeVaughn Allen (North Little Rock) during the second half of the Ramblers’ 65-59 victory over the No. 5 Gators on Wednesday in Gainesville, Fla.

LOYOLA CHICAGO 65, NO. 5 FLORIDA 59

GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- Aundre Jackson scored 23 points, Cameron Krutwig added 14 and Loyola-Chicago stunned No. 5 Florida 63-59 on Wednesday night, handing the Gators a third consecutive loss.

Less than 48 hours after Florida Coach Mike White said his team's performance against rival Florida State was "the epitome of soft," the Gators delivered another dud.

This one could knock them out of The Associated Press Top 25 next week, especially if they lose to 17th-ranked Cincinnati in New Jersey on Saturday. Arizona went from No. 2 to unranked earlier this season.

The Gators (5-3) shot 36.9 percent from the field, missed 17 of 19 three-point attempts and finished with seven assists.

The Ramblers (9-1) were much more efficient, shooting 52 percent from the field and making half their 12 shots from behind the arc.

White tweaked several aspects of Florida's approach: Deaundrae Ballard and Keith Stone replaced KeVaughn Allen and Jalen Hudson in the starting lineup, and the Gators pressed more than usual. Allen had started 68 consecutive games.

But nothing White did fixed Florida's shooting woes.

Allen was 3-of-11 shooting, including 1 of 5 from three-point range. Hudson was 3 of 11 from the field and 0 of 5 from behind the arc. Egor Koulechov was 3 of 13, including 0 for 3 on threes. Chris Chiozza was 3 of 7 from the field, had a team-high 9 points and finished with 4 assists.

No Florida player reached double digits in scoring.

The Gators also led just 93 seconds.

The Ramblers have to feel good. They enjoyed their best start through nine games since the 1965-66 season and led Florida for most of the night. Coach Porter Moser, a former head coach at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, has an experienced squad that's playing without senior guard Ben Richardson (broken hand).

Since leading top-ranked Duke by 17 points with 10 minutes to play in a championship game of the PK80, the Gators haven't been the same.

Between Duke's comeback and lackluster losses to Florida State and Loyola-Chicago, Florida has been outscored by a whopping 44 points in a 90-minute span. The stretch has raised questions about the team's ranking and potential.

In other Top 25 men’s games Wednesday, Matisse Thybulle hit 5 three-pointers and scored 19 points, Jaylen Nowell added 15 and Washington (7-2) led most of the way in upsetting No. 2 Kansas (7-1) 74-65. ... Luke Maye had 12 points and 12 rebounds while No. 11 North Carolina (9-1) hit a season-high 16 three-pointers to beat Western Carolina (3-7) 104-61. … Trevon Bluiett scored 26 points — the seventh time he’s had 20 this season — and No. 13 Xavier (8-1) took control with an 18-point run, pulling away to a 96-70 victory over Kent State (5-4).

In SEC men’s action Wednesday, Desean Murray scored a season-high 20 points and Anfernee McLemore finished with 17 to lead Auburn (7-1) to an 80-55 victory over Gardner-Webb (3-7). ... Collin Sexton drained a three-pointer and made two clutch free throws that extended Alabama’s lead to three with under a minute remaining as the Crimson Tide (7-2) held on for a 68-64 victory over Rhode Island (5-3). ... Nick King, one of the nation’s top scorers, scored 23 points to lead Middle Tennessee (6-1) to its third consecutive victory over Vanderbilt (3-6) by a score of 66-63.

Sports on 12/07/2017

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