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Monday, Dec 18, 2017
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No. 7 Florida finishes No. 17 Gonzaga in 2OT; No. 1 Duke up next for Gators

PORTLAND, Ore. — Jalen Hudson scored a career-high 35, including eight 3-pointers, and No. 7 Florida downed No. 17 Gonzaga 111-105 in double overtime Friday night at the PK80 Invitational.

Senior point guard Chris Chiozza added a career-high 26 points and 10 assists for the Gators (5-0), who go on to face No. 1 Duke (7-0) in the Motion Bracket championship on Sunday night.

The three-day, 16-team tournament — officially called the Phil Knight Invitational, honoring the 80th birthday of Nike's co-founder — is divided into two brackets, Motion and Victory. Duke holds a 3-1 series record over Florida in matchups when both teams are ranked (since the AP poll era, 1948-49). In their most recent meeting last year, the Blue Devils defeated the Gators 84-74 on Dec. 6 in the Jimmy V Classic at Madison Square Garden.

The Blue Devils rallied to defeat Texas 85-78 in overtime earlier in the day to advance to Sunday's title game.

For the Gators, Hudson hit a 3-pointer with 1:41 left in the second overtime that put them up 106-99. Gonzaga closed within 106-102 on Johnathan Williams' layup, then within 109-105 on Corey Kispert's 3 with 11 seconds to go but couldn't get closer.

Williams finished with a career-high 39 points and 12 rebounds for Gonzaga (4-1).

In the first overtime, Silas Melson got a layup to tie it at 95 with 1.8 seconds left, but missed a free throw that would have won it. Egor Koulechev was called for travelling on a heave down the court, giving Gonzaga back the ball with 0.7 seconds left but Melson missed a 3 from the corner at the buzzer.

Gonzaga went up 78-76 on Josh Perkins' layup and free throw with 40.1 seconds left in regulation. KeVaughn Allen's layup tied it and the game went to overtime.

The crowd at the Moda Center was decidedly on the side of Gonzaga, which is about a 5½-hour drive from Portland. Fans gave the team a standing ovation as they left the court at halftime with a 36-29 lead.

Killian Tillie finished with 17 points for Gonzaga before he fouled out in overtime. Josh Perkins also had 17, all in the second half, before also fouling out.

Gonzaga and Florida were in the Motion Bracket, playing Friday at the Moda Center, home of the NBA's Trail Blazers.

Melson's early 3-pointer that put Gonzaga in front 7-2 drew a roar from the crowd. Melson went to Portland's Jefferson High.

Williams went on a personal 8-0 run, with a free throw, a dunk, a 3-pointer and a jumper to put Gonzaga up 27-23, and the Bulldogs went into halftime with a 36-29 lead.

Florida wrestled back the lead on Hudson's 3-pointer, which made it 42-41. Hudson hit another 3 that pushed the lead to 53-49.

The teams also met last season over the Thanksgiving holiday in the AdvoCare Invitational. Gonzaga won 77-72 and went on to win the final 73-71 over Iowa State.

Overall, the Zags won two of the previous three meetings with the Gators.

BIG PICTURE: Gonzaga's starters were all averaging in double figures going into the game. … Florida is averaging more than 100 points through their first five games.

UP NEXT: PK80 Invitational championship (Motion Bracket): No. 7 Florida vs. No. 1 Duke, 10:30 p.m. Sunday, at Portland, Ore. TV: ESPN

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