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  • Writer's pictureFagothethird Franklin

Matharu scores a career-high 35 points as UF women beat Vandy 62-59 to reach the SEC quarterfinals


The 11th-seeded Florida Gators upset sixth-seeded Vanderbilt 62-59 on Thursday to win two games in the SEC Tournament for the first time since 1997. Aliyah Matharu scored 35 points, grabbed eight rebounds, and had four steals in a career-high performance. Matharus stood on business tonight. There was no one expecting this upset.


Matharu scored 11 consecutive Florida points in the first quarter that ended with the Gators up 17-14. Zipporah Broughton opened the second quarter with a three-point play but Vanderbilt scored eight points to take a 22-20 lead. Florida missed nine-straight shots as Vandy took the lead, but the Commodores failed to hit their last eight shots. Martharu had 16 points in the first half, including the first five of a 12-0 run to close the second quarter. This gave the Gators a 32-22 lead.


With the score at 58-55, Matharu took the ball out of bounds and under the Gators’ basket. The defender turned her back and Matharu threw the ball off the defender. She stepped inbounds, grabbed the loose ball and scored for a five-point lead.

Vanderbilt got two free throws from Jordyn Cambridge. Freshman Khamil Pierre had a steal and a layup to make it 60-59 with 25.8 to play. After Faith Dut made 1 of 2 from the foul line, Sacha Washington couldn't layup as she cut down the lane. Zipporah Broughton made a free throw with 11.8 to go but a last-second attempt for the tie by Iyana Moore was an air ball. The Gators will face third-seeded Ole Miss in Friday's quarterfinals.

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