80
TF 10
FINAL
End
2nd
SECN
Fri Mar. 9
9:44pm
BONUS
72
TF 14
FLA
20-12
ML: +184
FLA -4.5, O/U 144.5
ML: -220
ARK
FLA

No Text

Barford's 27 points sends Arkansas past No. 23 Florida

ST. LOUIS (AP) Believe it or not, Arkansas' NCAA Tournament hopes appeared all but lost a little more than a month ago.

The way the Razorbacks have played since, they're arguably the hottest team in the Southeastern Conference and looking to do far more than just reach the NCAAs for a third time in the last four seasons.

Led by Jaylen Barford's 27 points and 10 rebounds, Arkansas advanced to the semifinals of the SEC Tournament with an 80-72 win over No. 23 Florida on Friday night. The win is the eighth in the last 10 games for the sixth-seeded Razorbacks (23-10), a winning stretch matched in the SEC only by No. 13 Tennessee - who Arkansas will face on Saturday.

''I think we're slowly picking up steam and we're getting better,'' Arkansas coach Mike Anderson said. ''... This team is believing in each other.''

In addition to how often Arkansas has won since falling to 15-8 after back-to-back road losses to Texas A&M and LSU, it's who the Razorbacks have defeated that's so impressive. The win over the third-seeded Gators (20-12) was the school's third over a ranked opponent in the last month, improving Arkansas to 5-1 against ranked opponents this season.

It also ended an eight-game losing streak to Florida team that had won three games in a row coming into the tournament.

Barford, the third-leading scorer in the SEC, finished one off his career high in points in the win and he matched his best with the double-digit rebounds. He did so a night after hitting a key late 3-pointer in the Razorbacks opening win over South Carolina , finishing 9 of 17 from the field and showing off his usual array of physical finishes around the rim for all of the SEC to see.

Arkansas freshman Daniel Gafford added 16 points and also matched his career-best with 12 rebounds, keying an effort that saw the Razorbacks outrebound the Gators 43-28. Gafford also put the exclamation point on the victory with a windmill dunk on the break in the closing minute that sent the vocal Arkansas crowd into a frenzy in the Scottrade Center.

''I think our confidence is great right now as a team,'' Barford said. ''We came together, and I think everybody knows what's at task right now. It's game time, and everybody's ready to play.''

Keith Stone led Florida with 22 points and finished 8 of 10 from the field. Chris Chiozza added 16 points and KeVaughn Allen 11 for the Gators, who hit six of their first 10 3-pointers before hitting only seven of their next 22 to finish 13 of 32 overall from behind the arc.

BARFORD'S BARRAGE

Barford's career high of 28 points came earlier this season in a loss at Florida, giving the first-team All-SEC guard a total of 55 points in two games against the Gators this season. ''(Barford) scored on whoever was guarding him,'' Florida coach Mike White said. ''He scored off ball screens, he scored off step-back jumpers against our bigs. Two games this year he dominated us.''

BIG PICTURE

Arkansas: The last time the Razorbacks won a game against Florida was on Feb. 5, 2013, in Fayetteville. Since then, they had lost the eight straight games to add to a stretch of 13 losses in 14 games to the Gators. Arkansas has now won 40 straight games when leading at halftime, and it's well on its way to a third NCAA Tournament appearance in the last four seasons.

Florida: Allen is from Arkansas and played in at North Little Rock High School with Arkansas guard Anton beard. The senior scored a season-high 28 points in Florida's 88-73 win over the Razorbacks on Jan. 17, but he was held to a 4-of-11 shooting effort on Friday. The loss was the first of Allen's career against his home state, coming after he had been a part of six straight victories over the Razorbacks.

UP NEXT

Florida waits for its NCAA Tournament destination.

Arkansas faces second-seeded Tennessee on Saturday.

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More AP college basketball: http://collegebasketball.ap.org and http://www.twitter.com/AP-Top25

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Follow Kurt Voigt on Twitter at (at)Kurt-Voigt-AP

Copyright 2018 by AP. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of AP is strictly prohibited.

Key Players
D. Macon
4 G
C. Chiozza
11 G
32.1 Min. Per Game 32.1
11.0 Pts. Per Game 11.0
6.1 Ast. Per Game 6.1
4.5 Reb. Per Game 4.5
45.0 Field Goal % 42.3
42.5 Three Point % 35.6
86.6 Free Throw % 80.0
+ 3 Jalen Hudson made 3-pt. jump shot, assist by KeVaughn Allen 10.0
+ 2 Daniel Gafford made dunk, assist by Anton Beard 15.0
  Defensive rebound by Jaylen Barford 21.0
  KeVaughn Allen missed jump shot 23.0
+ 1 Daryl Macon made 2nd of 2 free throws 26.0
+ 1 Daryl Macon made 1st of 2 free throws 26.0
  Personal foul on Deaundrae Ballard 26.0
+ 1 Chris Chiozza made free throw 27.0
  Shooting foul on Daryl Macon 27.0
+ 2 Chris Chiozza made layup 27.0
+ 1 Daryl Macon made 2nd of 2 free throws 30.0
Team Stats
Points 80 72
Field Goals 28-60 (46.7%) 25-60 (41.7%)
3-Pointers 8-19 (42.1%) 13-32 (40.6%)
Free Throws 16-24 (66.7%) 9-14 (64.3%)
Total Rebounds 43 28
Offensive 13 8
Defensive 27 20
Team 3 0
Assists 8 13
Steals 1 4
Blocks 1 5
Turnovers 5 8
Fouls 16 21
Technicals 0 0
27 PTS, 10 REB, 1 AST
22 PTS, 5 REB, 1 AST
12T
away team logo Arkansas 23-10 305080
home team logo 23 Florida 20-12 294372
Team Stats
away team logo Arkansas 23-10 79.6 PPG 42.7 RPG 17.6 APG
home team logo 23 Florida 20-12 69.7 PPG 39.5 RPG 13.0 APG
Key Players
00
J. Barford G PPG RPG APG FG%
25
K. Stone F 6.3 PPG 4.3 RPG 0.5 APG 38.3 FG%
Top Scorers
J. Barford G 27 PTS 10 REB 1 AST
K. Stone F 22 PTS 5 REB 1 AST
46.7 FG% 41.7
42.1 3PT FG% 40.6
66.7 FT% 64.3
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
J. Barford 27 10 1 9/17 4/9 5/6 2 32 0 0 2 4 6
D. Gafford 16 12 1 8/11 0/0 0/0 3 28 0 1 1 5 7
D. Macon 13 4 3 2/9 1/3 8/10 2 30 0 0 1 1 3
A. Beard 10 3 3 3/6 2/3 2/4 3 31 0 0 1 0 3
A. Bailey 2 2 0 1/2 0/0 0/0 1 17 1 0 0 0 2
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
J. Barford 27 10 1 9/17 4/9 5/6 2 32 0 0 2 4 6
D. Gafford 16 12 1 8/11 0/0 0/0 3 28 0 1 1 5 7
D. Macon 13 4 3 2/9 1/3 8/10 2 30 0 0 1 1 3
A. Beard 10 3 3 3/6 2/3 2/4 3 31 0 0 1 0 3
A. Bailey 2 2 0 1/2 0/0 0/0 1 17 1 0 0 0 2
Bench PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
D. Hall 6 2 0 2/4 1/1 1/2 2 13 0 0 0 1 1
A. Cook 4 4 0 2/4 0/0 0/2 1 20 0 0 0 2 2
T. Thompson 2 1 0 1/3 0/0 0/0 1 13 0 0 0 0 1
C. Jones 0 1 0 0/2 0/2 0/0 1 13 0 0 0 0 1
G. Osabuohien 0 1 0 0/2 0/1 0/0 0 3 0 0 0 0 1
D. Thomas - - - - - - - - - - - - -
J. Holmes - - - - - - - - - - - - -
K. Garland - - - - - - - - - - - - -
J. Plummer - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Total 80 40 8 28/60 8/19 16/24 16 200 1 1 5 13 27
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
C. Chiozza 16 2 6 5/11 2/4 4/4 3 34 1 1 3 1 1
K. Allen 11 3 4 4/11 2/7 1/3 1 31 0 1 1 1 2
E. Koulechov 8 6 2 2/11 2/7 2/2 2 31 0 0 1 0 6
J. Hudson 6 4 0 2/9 2/5 0/2 3 25 0 0 1 0 4
K. Hayes 4 5 0 2/3 0/0 0/0 3 26 0 2 1 3 2
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
C. Chiozza 16 2 6 5/11 2/4 4/4 3 34 1 1 3 1 1
K. Allen 11 3 4 4/11 2/7 1/3 1 31 0 1 1 1 2
E. Koulechov 8 6 2 2/11 2/7 2/2 2 31 0 0 1 0 6
J. Hudson 6 4 0 2/9 2/5 0/2 3 25 0 0 1 0 4
K. Hayes 4 5 0 2/3 0/0 0/0 3 26 0 2 1 3 2
Bench PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
K. Stone 22 5 1 8/10 4/5 2/3 3 24 1 0 0 2 3
M. Okauru 5 1 0 2/4 1/3 0/0 2 13 1 0 0 0 1
D. Bassett 0 0 0 0/0 0/0 0/0 0 4 0 1 0 0 0
G. Gak 0 1 0 0/0 0/0 0/0 0 5 0 0 0 0 1
D. Ballard 0 1 0 0/1 0/1 0/0 4 7 1 0 1 1 0
C. Johnson - - - - - - - - - - - - -
I. Stokes - - - - - - - - - - - - -
A. Fava - - - - - - - - - - - - -
M. Krause - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Total 72 28 13 25/60 13/32 9/14 21 200 4 5 8 8 20