Men's College Basketball
<    April    

                 === Kansas State knocks off No. 8 Florida ===
 Kansas  City, MO (Sports Network) - Will Spradling scored 17 points and Kansas
 State used a strong second-half run to deal eighth-ranked Florida a 67-61 loss
 at the Sprint Center.
 Spradling  added  six rebounds and five  assists for Kansas State (9-2), which
 outscored  the  Gators by an  11-2 count over a  five-minute stretch to turn a
 one-point  lead into  a 57-47  advantage with  5:20 to  play. Rodney  McGruder
 chipped in 13 points and six boards to help the Wildcats post their fourth win
 in five games.
 "That  was  a heck of an  effort by our  guys," Kansas State coach Bruce Weber
 said. "We had to compete for 40 minutes just to give ourselves a chance."
 Superior  free  throw shooting also played  a part in Kansas State prevailing.
 The  Wildcats ended  the night 20-of-29 from the foul line, while Florida made
 only 10-of-15 looks from the stripe.
 The  Gators  (8-2) suffered their second  setback in three outings following a
 7-0  start despite  a 19-point,  10-rebound  effort from  Patric Young.  Kenny
 Boynton and Scottie Wilbekin each recorded 11 points in defeat.
 "I  thought in the game (the Wildcats) were just a step ahead of us and a step
 quicker," Florida coach Billy Donovan said.
 Florida  fought back from an 10-point halftime deficit to forge a 41-41 tie on
 a  Boynton  3-pointer with  13:21 to go,  and the Wildcats  were clinging to a
 46-45 edge after the Gators' Mike Rosario buried a long-range jumper less than
 three minutes later.
 However,  Kansas State -- which entered the matchup ranked third nationally in
 3-point  percentage  defense  --  clamped down  afterward  while  its  offense
 delivered several clutch shots.
 Up  50-47 with under nine minutes to go, Martavious Irving drained a 3-ball to
 push  the Wildcats'  lead to six. Spradling and Jordan Henriquez then combined
 for  four made free throws during a Florida cold spell that made it a 10-point
 differential with under 5 1/2 minutes left.
 The  Gators  would put up  six of  the next seven  points to pull within 58-53
 entering  the final  two minutes, but Shane Southwell knocked down a 3-pointer
 on  Kansas  State's next trip  to help keep Florida  at bay. The Wildcats then
 preserved the win by hitting 6-of-8 foul shots down the stretch.
 Florida held a slim 19-17 lead with 7 1/2 minutes remaining in the first half,
 but  Kansas State  ripped off  nine consecutive  points to  kick-start a  16-3
 overall surge to move in front.
 Spradling  netted five  points during  the  burst, which  ended when  McGruder
 dropped  in  1-of-2 foul  shots to put  the Wildcats up  33-22 with 55 seconds
 left. Young would close out the period with a made free throw to provide a 10-
 point spread at the break.
 Florida  shot a subpar 30.8 percent (8-of-26) in the first half, but began the
 second  on  fire. The Gators  outscored Kansas State by  a 12-3 count over the
 initial  four minutes  to pull within 36-35,  and evened the score at 41-41 on
 Boynton's trey shortly afterward.
                                   Game Notes
 The  victory was Kansas State's first over a top 10 opponent in non-conference
 play  since a 62-52 triumph over Minnesota on Dec. 21, 1981 ... Florida, which
 entered  the  game atop  the nation  in scoring defense  (49.6 ppg), yielded a
 season-high  in  points ... The  Gators went  just 5-of-19 from 3-point range,
 with  Boynton and Rosario combining to go 2-of-9 on their attempts from beyond
 the  arc ...  Kansas State has now  faced three top 15 teams out of conference
 for  the first time in school history. The Wildcats lost to No. 2 Michigan and
 No.  14 Gonzaga earlier  in the year ... Donovan fell to  1-3 all-time against
 Kansas State, with the two other losses coming during his tenure at Marshall.
 12/23 02:07:18 ET

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