Dalton Knecht goes for 39 as No. 6 Tennessee routs Florida

Dalton Knecht scored a career-high 39 points and No. 6 Tennessee rolled past Florida 85-66 on Tuesday in Knoxville, Tenn.

Knecht, who scored 36 points in a road victory against Georgia on Saturday, surpassed his previous career high of 37 points, set against North Carolina earlier this season. He made 13 of 23 field-goal attempts, 4 of 6 3-pointers and all nine of his free throws for the Volunteers (13-4, 3-1 Southeastern Conference).

Tennessee took a 12-point halftime lead and never let the margin slip to single digits in the second half.

Jonas Aidoo added 19 points and nine rebounds and Knecht added eight rebounds in a game that started two hours earlier than originally scheduled because of severe weather.

Walter Clayton Jr. scored 16 points, Riley Kugel came off the bench to add 12, Zyon Pullin scored 11 and Tyrese Samuel had 10 points and 11 rebounds to lead the Gators (11-6, 1-3).

Aidoo scored the Vols’ first six points of the second half to increase their lead to 50-34.

Clayton made a 3-pointer for the Gators, but Zakai Zeigler answered with a three-point play and a 3-pointer to help Tennessee expand the lead to 57-37.

Florida closed within 10 points twice, but Knecht scored seven points and Aidoo had five during a 12-0 run that put the Vols in command with a 73-51 lead as Florida went scoreless for more than five minutes.

The Vols scored the first four points of the game and never relinquished the lead, but the Gators got within 14-11 when Kugel made a 3-pointer.

Aidoo had two baskets during an 8-0 run that increased Tennessee’s lead to 22-11.

Alex Condon made a free throw to stop the run, and Will Richard later hit a 3-pointer that got Florida within 26-17.

Knecht answered with a jumper and a 3-pointer to help the Vols increase the lead to 17 points.

Kugel made a 3-pointer and the Gators got as close as 10 points before Tennessee rebuilt the lead to 16.

Pullin’s layup and Kugel’s dunk concluded the first-half scoring as Florida trimmed the lead to 44-32 at halftime.