Instant analysis: UF 82, Miss. Valley St. 54

December, 19, 2011
12/19/11
9:03
PM ET
GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- Kenny Boynton, Bradley Beal and Erving Walker combined to make nine 3-pointers to help the 12th-ranked Gators roll past over-matched Mississippi Valley State 82-54 at the O'Connell Center on Monday night.

Boynton went 3-for-6 from 3-point range -- and had the worst night of the three. Beal made 3-of-5 and Walker made 3-of-4. The rest of the team went 1-for-5 from 3-point range.

Walker led all scorers with 19 points. Boynton added 16 and Beal had 13.

The Gators (9-2) play host to state rival Florida State on Thursday night.

Player of the game: Southeastern Conference play hasn't started yet, but Boynton is already making a case to be the league's Player of the Year. The junior guard scored 16 points on 6-of-11 shooting. He also had a four assists. Boynton came into the game second in the SEC in scoring (19.0 points per game), just behind Vanderbilt's John Jenkins (20.1 ppg).

Stat of the game: Florida had 15 assists, the ninth time this season the Gators have had at least 15. The only time they failed to have 15 assists was against Ohio State (11) and Texas A&M (13). UF had a season-high 25 against Rider, 22 against Stetson and 20 against Jackson State and Jacksonville.

What did we learn: UF coach Billy Donovan kept saying the Gators are a better free-throw shooting team than they've showed. They finally proved him right. UF went 20-of-24 from the free-throw line against Mississippi Valley State, the Gators' best performance of the year (83.8 percent). It easily eclipsed their previous season high of 76.7 percent (Texas A&M). UF made 23-of-30 free throws against Texas A&M on Saturday.

Noteworthy: Guard Mike Rosario (strained lower back) and forward Cody Larson (strep throat) did not play. ... Mississippi Valley State concluded its non-conference schedule, which consisted of Notre Dame, DePaul, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee State, Cal Poly, Arkansas, Northwestern and Ole Miss.

Mike DiRocco | email

ESPN Jacksonville Jaguars reporter

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