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Thursday, January 8, 2009
3Q update: Florida 14, Oklahoma 7

By ESPN.com staff
ESPN.com

Posted by ESPN.com's Chris Low

MIAMI -- Florida finally found the offensive spark it was looking for in the third quarter Thursday night.

Tim Tebow.

The Gators spread it out and let Tebow do his thing, and he responded by doing the bulk of the work in a gorgeous touchdown drive to put Florida ahead 14-7 heading into the final quarter of the FedEx BCS National Championship Game.

Tebow kept the ball six times in the drive, twice converting on third down with hard-charging runs up the middle. On the first one, he lowered his head and plowed into Oklahoma safety Nic Harris after picking up 14 yards.

And while the Florida defense made all the timely plays in the first half, special teams got into the act in the third quarter.

The Gators' Dustin Doe blocked Jimmy Stevens' 49-yard field goal attempt in the final minutes. It was the ninth blocked kick by Florida this season, a school record.

The reason the Sooners were kicking there, though, was because the Gators rose up again on defense the play before. Linebacker Ryan Stamper knifed through and stopped Oklahoma tailback Chris Brown for a 4-yard loss on a third-and-1 play from the Gators' 27-yard line.

You can't help but wonder how many more times the Florida defense is going to be able to keep making these game-changing plays.

The Sooners have had a lot of opportunities, but the Gators keep turning them away.