LEXINGTON, Kentucky (Ticker) -- Back in the starting lineup, Gerald Fitch gave a strong farewell performance at Rupp Arena.
Fitch scored 21 points as ninth-ranked Kentucky closed the regular season on a six-game winning streak with an 82-62 Southeastern Conference triumph over Florida.
A starter through most of the season, Fitch had come off the bench in his last five games after missing three with a sprained right index finger. Fitch returned to the starting lineup Sunday as one of five seniors making their final home appearance.
Kentucky (23-4, 13-3 SEC East) took control with a 19-4 burst that opened a 31-17 advantage with 4 1/2 minutes left before halftime. Fitch scored five points in that surge.
"It's a great senior night," Fitch said. "There was a lot of focus on the seniors. I don't want to say there was added pressure, but we knew we had to get something done."
Florida (18-9, 9-7), which had a four-game winning streak snapped, pulled within 35-29 on Anthony Roberson's 3-pointer to open the second half.
The Wildcats responded with 17 straight points to put away the game. Antwain Barbour scored eight of his 12 points in that stretch, capping it with a dunk on a fast break for a 52-29 cushion with 15:23 to go.
"It was a good way to finish the season," Kentucky coach Tubby Smith said. "I am so happy for our seniors that they could go out as winners."
Fitch's effort was one of many by Kentucky's fine senior class. Erik Daniels collected 15 points and 14 rebounds and Chuck Hayes also had a double-double with 12 and 12. Point guard Cliff Hawkins handed out nine assists.
"It was emotional," Hawkins said. "I've had a lot of great memories here in this building and I'll miss it and cherish every moment I've had."
Kentucky held a commanding 53-26 advantage on the glass, scoring 19 second-chance points on 23 offensive rebounds. The Wildcats scored 26 points off 22 turnovers by the Gators.
"Going into the postseason, I am concerned," Florida coach Billy Donovan said. "We are not a great team now. We haven't been in the top 10 for most of the season."
Florida's ballhandling problems were exemplified by small forward Matt Walsh, who had seven turnovers. Walsh, the team's second leading scorer at 16.3 points, finished with 12.
Roberson drained six 3-pointers and scored 22 points to lead the Gators, who have dropped six straight against the Wildcats.