Sun, 16 Jan 2022

Texas Southern stuns No. 20 Florida for first win of season

Field Level Media
07 Dec 2021, 11:19 GMT+10

PJ Henry scored 16 points off the bench and Joirdon Karl Nicholas scored 14 points to help previously winless Texas Southern upset No. 20 Florida 69-54 on Monday night in Gainesville, Fla.

The Tigers (1-7) scored one of the biggest upsets of the college basketball season over the Gators (6-2), who have now dropped two in a row after a 6-0 start.

Nicholas, a transfer from Stephen F. Austin, shot a perfect 7-for-7 from the field and Texas Southern shot 54.4 percent (31-for-57) overall.

During its winless start, four of Texas Southern's seven losses were by single digits, three came against Power Five conference teams and two came against ranked opponents.

Texas Southern outrebounded Florida 46-23, which made a major difference inside and allowed the Tigers to outscore the Gators 42-26 in the paint and create 17 second-chance points. This offset the Tigers' 22 turnovers, which led to 15 Florida points.

John Walker III finished with 13 points and seven rebounds and Brison Gresham's 13 rebounds and eight points helped Texas Southern dominate Florida on the boards.

The Gators struggled from beyond the arc for the second consecutive game. They made 5 of 24 3-pointers (20.8 percent) Monday after making just 4 of 24 in their previous defeat to Oklahoma last Wednesday.

Florida also was poor from the free throw line Monday, going 7-for-16.

Brandon McKissic led the Gators with 15 points and Colin Castleton scored 12 points and had five rebounds.

But the Tigers took advantage of early foul trouble for Florida starters Anthony Duruji and Phlandrous Fleming Jr. and shot 57.1 percent in the first half to take a 35-25 lead by halftime.

Since 2018, the Tigers have twice made it to the NCAA Tournament as a No. 16 seed but failed to pull upsets after winning their First Four games. They are in the midst of a 13-game stretch of road games to open the season.

--Field Level Media

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