Liam Robbins’s career game lifts Vanderbilt past Florida


Liam Robbins had a career-high 32 points while adding 10 rebounds and four blocks, lifting visiting Vanderbilt to a 88-80 win at Florida on Saturday afternoon in Gainesville, Fla.

Trey Thomas added 16 points for the Commodores (13-12, 6-6 SEC), who snapped a nine-game losing streak against Florida dating back to 2019. Thomas went 5-for-5 from the field and a perfect 4-for-4 from 3-point range.

As a team, Vanderbilt was torrid from the perimeter throughout the afternoon, shooting 48.3 percent from the field and 52.2 percent (12-for-23) from 3-point range.

The Gators (13-12, 6-6) dropped their third straight since their upset of then-No. 2 Tennessee. Colin Castleton led four scorers in double figures with 25 points and 11 rebounds, with freshman Riley Kugel adding 18 points.

Florida cut Vanderbilt’s lead to 73-69 with 5:06 left, but Jordan Wright answered for the Commodores with a pair of free throws, then Robbins sank his third 3-pointer of the game to put Vanderbilt ahead 78-69 with 2:47 left as the Commodores cruised from there.

Vanderbilt made its first six shots of the game and shot 50 percent from 3-point range (7-14) in the first half to take a 42-41 lead into the intermission.

Robbins had his way inside and outside for Vanderbilt against Florida’s defense, going 7 of 12 from the floor and 1 of 2 from 3-point range to score 17 points in the first half.

The Commodores led by as many as eight points in the opening 20 minutes, going up 22-14 on a 3-pointer by guard Myles Slute.

Florida chipped away at the lead behind Castleton, who scored 12 points in the first half. Kowacie Reeves gave Florida a brief 35-34 lead, but Vanderbilt answered back with four straight points on a Robbins jumper and driving layup by Ezra Manjon to go back up 38-35 about three minutes before half.

With the score tied at 39, Thomas sank a corner 3-pointer with nine seconds left in the half to put Vanderbilt up 42-39. Kugel answered with a reverse layup at the first-half buzzer cutting Vanderbilt’s lead to 43-42.

Vanderbilt shot 51.6 percent from the field in the first half, while Florida shot 52.8 percent.

–Field Level Media

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