DALLAS — Both Florida and Texas Tech looked vulnerable early in their NCAA Tournament openers Thursday night, but both asserted control in the second half and pulled away to advance.
Now the No. 6-seeded Gators (21-12) will get the No. 3 Red Raiders (25-9) on Saturday at American Airlines Center, which may have the feel of a home game for one of the teams.
Texas Tech’s fans filled the arena with a whole lot of red and a whole lot of noise for the team’s 70-60 win over Stephen F. Austin.
“We’ve got to be prepared for a hostile environment, obviously. We’re in Texas,” Florida guard Egor Koulechov said. “We saw they have a lot of crowd here. But we’re going to do our best, treat it as every other game this year, lock in on our end, try to defend at a high level, get a good scouting report in.”
What time is the Florida vs. Texas Tech game?
The game is set to tip off at 8:40 p.m. ET Saturday at American Airlines Center in Dallas.
What TV channel is showing the Florida-Texas Tech game?
The game will air on TNT and can be streamed online here.
Texas Tech coach Chris Beard was a national coach of the year candidate in his second season after leading the Red Raiders to their most wins since the 1995-96 season.
They trailed by as many as 8 points early in the second half Thursday against Stephen F. Austin before rallying for a 70-60 win.
As he has most of the season, Keenan Evans led the way with 23 points while Zhaire Smith added 10 points and 8 rebounds.
Evans, a senior guard, leads the team in scoring at 17.5 points per game.
Florida, meanwhile, was tied at 21-21 in the final minutes of the first half with St. Bonaventure before asserting control.
The Gators have been an inconsistent team much of this season, but they’ve now won four of their last five games and looked confident down the stretch Thursday night.
They are led by their four veteran guards in Jalen Hudson (15.3 PPG), Koulechov (13.8 PPG), Chris Chiozza (11.1 PPG, 6.2 assists per game) and KeVaughn Allen (11.1 PPG).
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