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Instant Recap: Gators Show Out in Second Half, Top Kentucky

Updated: Dec 4, 2020

Win and you’re in.

Coming into yet another SEC game as a three-plus touchdown favorite, the sixth-ranked Florida Gators were looking to avenge their 2018 home loss against the unranked Kentucky Wildcats on Saturday.

Despite being severely undermanned to the tune of 18 missing players (4 starters), the feisty ‘Cats would go on to post a respectable performance. The orange and blue home team would prove to be too explosive though, as Florida prevailed 34-10 to keep its dreams of SEC title and CFP Playoff berths alive.

While the second quarter caused some handwringing among the Florida faithful, yet again the game made a dramatic heel turn onsome heroics by the Gators just before halftime. Week after week, the Gators have turned bad situations or tight games into shootouts in the blink of an eye. But that was not the only storyline of the day.

The other would be the Kyle-to-Kyle connection.

The Gators got it started early in the first quarter when Trask recorded the first of his three touchdown passes – all of which were to Kyle Pitts – following a brilliant fake punt deep on Florida’s side of the field. Pitts’ 56-yard reception got the gators on the board first, but they would not find the endzone again until under a minute remained in the first half.

In fact, it looked as if the visiting Wildcats might take a lead going into the locker room at the break following a Kentucky field goal and a Terry Wilson touchdown pass to Keaton Upshaw.

However, facing a 10-7 deficit, Kadarius Toney provided the spark. With 42 seconds left on the clock, the entire Gators special teams fooled Kentucky into thinking Xzavier Henderson was fielding the punt return. He wasn’t. Toney caught the ball at the fifty and did what he did best. The dizzying wide receiver caught the ball at the 50, shook a defender, and he was off to the races. So were the Gators.

Florida stayed hot and put up 17 points in the third due to two Kyle Pitts touchdowns and a McPherson field goal. McPherson would finish the scoring with a field goal in the fourth quarter as well.

The defense deserves some kudos, though. Interceptions by Mohamoud Diabate, Shawn Davis, and Tre’Vez Johnson punctuated a second-half shutout. The unit surrendered only 221 total yards and held Terry Wilson to 10-18, 62 yards, 1 touchdown, and 2 picks. In the third quarter, the ‘Cats were stopped for a mere 13 yards of offense to accompany a bevy of penalties. A very respectable performance for an oft-beleaguered defense.

Florida will look to keep all of its postseason goals in play with a trip to Knoxville against the Volunteers next week.

Extra Points:

- Kyle Trask finished the day 21 of 27, 256 yards, 3 touchdowns, and 0 interceptions.


- Punter Jacob Finn executed a flawless coffin-corner kick late in the second to set up Toney’s punt return following Kentucky’s next drive.


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