(GAINESVILLE, FL) — Jeff Driskel hit Mike Gillislee on a screen pass that went the distance in the fourth quarter to help Florida (No. 7 BCS, No. 8 AP) escape Missouri 14-7.
The win helped the Gators (8-1, 7-1) bounce back from a devastating loss to Georgia last week. Their hopes of winning the SEC’s Eastern Division remain alive.
In order to clinch a spot in the SEC title game, Florida needs the Gators to lose one of their two remaining regular-season games.
It was another tough game for the Tigers (4-5, 1-5) who are playing in their first season in the SEC. They took a 7-0 lead into halftime but were shut down for the entire second half.
Missouri quarterback James Franklin struggled against the Gator defense, throwing for 251 yards, no touchdowns, and four interceptions.
Running back Omarius Hines scored a 36-yard touchdown to tie the game in the third quarter, before Florida took the lead for good late.
Franklin led the Tigers on a drive late, but Josh Evans intercepted him on fourth-down in the end zone with five seconds left in the game to seal the victory.
Florida surpassed last season’s win total of seven.
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio.
Eliott C. McLaughlin, CNN Newswire
Jill Martin, CNN