NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Colin Castleton scored a career-high 23 points and Florida opened the SEC season on Wednesday night with a 91-72 win over Vanderbilt in the Gators’ first game since Keyontae Johnson’s collapse.
Johnson, who entered the season as the SEC Preseason Player of the Year, collapsed early in an 83-71 loss to then-No. 20 Florida State and was rushed to a hospital on Dec. 12, where he was held for 10 days. Florida’s remaining nonconference games were postponed.
Castleton was 11 of 13 from the field and the Gators (4-1) shot 34 of 55 (62%). Scottie Lewis added 16 points, Tyree Appleby scored 13 and Noah Locke had 10. Anthony Duruji, starting in Johnson’s place, finished with 11 points.
Scotty Pippen Jr. had 18 points for the Commodores (4-3). Dylan Disu added 14 points, Trey Thomas scored 12 and Myles Stute had 11.
Florida built a 16-point lead late in the first half and kept its lead in double digits for most of the second.