At halftime, things looked a little scary for the No. 1 Florida Gators. They were only up two points on a South Carolina squad that had won four conference games all year. Somebody had to step up.
Then Michael Frazier II happened.
The sophomore guard absolutely went off this game, scoring a career-high 37 points en route to a 72-46 Gator win in Columbia. This brings Florida (28-2, 17-0 Southeastern Conference) one win away from becoming the first team in the league to finish the conference schedule 18-0.
And if Frazier performs like he did tonight, they definitely will.
Frazier scored 33 of his points off a staggering 11 of 18 3-pointers, the most ever in an SEC game and third-most by an SEC player. This also broke the previous 3-pointer school record held by Joe Lawrence, who had nine in a 1986 game against California.
Frazier started off his night with a casual five treys in the first half, then opened up the second half with four over 3 minutes. Florida had led by only four points early in the second half, and Frazier’s scoring barrage helped the team pull away from South Carolina (11-19, 4-13 SEC) by 22 points.
Florida finished 11 of 31 from the three-point line, meaning that Michael Frazier single-handedly took care of that statistic himself. All other Gators went 0 for 13 from beyond the arc.
After South Carolina scored only 20 points in the second half, Gamecock fans didn’t have much to say when the game was over, except for a “Geor-gia South-ern” chant. But football season has been long gone — it’s close to March Madness time, and the Gators are fully poised for a national championship run.
Although tonight was the Michael Frazier II show, it’s worth mentioning who else scored for the Gators. They’re important. Patric Young was second on the team with nine points, and Casey Prather scored seven. Mindaugas Kacinas led South Carolina with 12.
Florida will next face No. 25 Kentucky in its regular season finale at the O’Dome. Tip-off is set for noon Saturday, March 8. The Gators will honor seniors Will Yeguete, Scottie Wilbekin, Young and Prather. Get ready.