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Tennessee, Florida Get Into Heated Confrontation During Post-Game Handshake

In the SEC, they say it just means more. It turns out, that saying applies even after the final horn has sounded.

No. 18 Tennessee stormed back from a double-digit deficit to beat Florida, 78–71, on Wednesday to remain undefeated at home on the season. The fireworks kicked into gear as the two teams lined up to shake hands after the game, as tensions clearly had not subsided between the two rivals.

It’s unclear exactly what started the tussle, but the game was competitive throughout. Volunteers fans relished the opportunity to wave the Gators players off the court in the aftermath, with many doing a mock chomp hand gesture.

Tennessee used a big push to open the second half and draw level by the nine-minute mark, and the two sides went back-and-forth from there. Florida took a one-point lead on a three-pointer by Tyree Appleby with 32 seconds left, but the Volunteers retook the lead at the free throw line and held Florida scoreless to finish.

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Tennessee guard Santiago Vescovi led all scorers with 23 points, shooting 5-of-8 on three-point attempts with four assists. Freshman Kennedy Chandler added 17 points and five assists. Appleby and Anthony Duruji each led Florida with 16 points.

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The Gators have hit a bit of a skid since opening SEC play, losing five of their last eight games. The two teams are not scheduled to play again this season, so a potential rematch will have to happen with a bit of bracket luck in the SEC tournament in March. Considering how this one ended, each team would relish the opportunity to meet again.

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