Huskies, Gators in close game in Dallas

DALLAS - Florida raced out to a 16-4 lead over Connecticut and appeared headed to the comfortable win many expected in the first semifinal game of the NCAA Tournament.

Then, the Huskies started making shots.

Connecticut made three 3-pointers as part of an 11-0 run to get back in the game.

That was before star guard Shabazz Napier had even scored a point.

Napier hit a couple shots late in the half as Connecticut seized control of the game to take a 25-22 lead into the extended halftime break in the first of today’s two national semifinals.

DeAndre Daniels scored 10 points to lead the Huskies.

Casey Prather has seven points for the Gators, but the tournament’s top seed is struggling to shoot the ball. Florida made just 1 of 7 from 3-point range and went 5-for-9 from the free-throw line.

Two of the missed free throws came on the front end of one-and-one situations, taking away two additional opportunities to score.

The Gators made just 34.8 percent from the floor overall.

Florida played fine in most respects, and Scottie Wilbekin’s defense on Napier for most of the half was stellar, but the Gators will have to shoot the ball better in the second half if they hope to play for the national championship on Monday night.