By JESSE SMITHEY
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Kevin Punter established the pace in the first half, and Tennessee used the fast start to remain unbeaten at home this season with an 83-69 win over Florida on Wednesday night.
Tennessee (8-6, 1-1 SEC) made 20 of 39 shots for a 53-31 halftime lead. Punter, the No. 2 scorer in the SEC at 22.8 points per game, made his first seven shots and scored 18 of his game-high 26 points before the break.
His free throws with 13:03 left to play in the second half gave Tennessee a 64-34 advantage that Florida couldn’t overcome.
The Vols have won all eight home contests. They snapped a four-game losing streak to Florida (9-5, 1-1) by shooting 47 percent from the floor. The Gators shot 34 percent.
Tennessee freshman Admiral Schofield contributed 17 points and eight rebounds.
Kevaughn Allen paced Florida with 18 points. Dorian Finney-Smith had 12 points and 11 rebounds.
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