The Associated Press
SUNRISE, Fla. — Kenny Boynton scored 15 points to shake a slump Saturday, and Florida held No. 6 Kansas State to 27 percent shooting for a 57-44 victory in the one-day Orange Bowl Classic.
The Wildcats missed 19-of-20 shots during one stretch, and their point total was their lowest in Frank Martin’s five seasons as coach. They lost 57-42 to Nebraska in January 2006.
Florida fell behind 20-8, then outscored Kansas State 42-13 to take control. Boynton was 6 for 12 from the field and was voted the game’s most valuable player.
Florida (8-2) ended a streak of 14 consecutive December wins for Kansas State (9-2) dating to 2008. The Wildcats had won their past five games, and their only other loss was to top-ranked Duke.
The result meant an unhappy homecoming for Martin, who grew up in nearby Miami, and two players who have South Florida roots – Martavious Irving and Freddy Asprilla.
Kansas State made only one basket during a span of 18 minutes midway through the game, as Florida rallied from a 20-8 deficit to take a 36-27 lead. Three consecutive baskets by Boynton – two of them 3-pointers – boosted the margin to 50-33 with 6 minutes left.
Boynton had shot 3 for 21 in his past two games.
Erving Walker added 13 points for the Gators, who won despite tying a season-high with 18 turnovers. Vernon Macklin had 10 points and seven rebounds.
Jacob Pullen had 19 points to lead the Wildcats in scoring for the ninth time this season, but he shot only 6 for 17. The rest of the starting lineup went 3 for 18.
The Gators committed six turnovers and missed four shots before they finally scored 7 minutes into the game after falling behind 9-0. Pullen’s 3-pointer built the Wildcats’ lead to 20-8, but they went 1 for 10 over the final 9 minutes of the half and led only 23-20 at halftime.
Then the Wildcats missed their first 10 shots of the second half.
The Gators scored the first eight points of the half, and Macklin’s dunk put them ahead for the first time, 24-23. They pulled away from there.