Rashad Madden scored 21 points and Arkansas made ten 3-pointers in its 81-70 Southeastern Conference victory against LSU at Bud Walton Arena in Fayetteville on Saturday afternoon.
LSU had fought back from a ten-point first-half deficit to take a 55-54 lead on an Andre Stringer 3-pointer with 11:03 remaining in the game. A field goal by Johnny O'Bryant put the Tigers ahead by three points. Arkansas then put together a 12-2 run to take control of the game. Field goals by Alandise Harris and Bobby Portis gave the Razorbacks a 58-57 lead. Portis made another basket before Coty Clarke and Madden knocked down 3-pointers. Madden's trey with 5:36 remaining put the Hogs on top 66-59. LSU missed seven straight field goal attempts after taking the three-point advantage. The lone Tigers points in this nearly five-minute span came on a field goal by Jarell Martin.
KEY PERIOD IN FIRST HALF
After O'Bryant scored the first two points of the game, Arkansas went on a 14-2 run. All but two of the points came on 3-pointers - three by Louisiana native Michael Qualls and one by Fred Gulley. The other two points came on foul shots by Madden. The lone LSU player to score in this stretch was Martin, who made a field goal. Qualls' third 3-pointer gave the Razorbacks a 14-4 lead with 15:43 left in the first half. The Tigers came no closer than four points which was their deficit at halftime. Jordan Mickey sank two free throws with 54 seconds remaining to leave LSU behind 37-33 at the half.
KEY PERIOD IN SECOND HALF
LSU quickly fell behind by six points when both Qualls and Clarke made one of two foul shots in the first two minutes of the second half. It took the Tigers almost 2½ minutes to score after halftime. LSU's drought ended on a field goal by Shavon Coleman with 17:36 left in the game. The Tigers gradually chipped away and finally tied the score at 50-50 on a 3-pointer by Anthony Hickey with 13:10 remaining. During this stretch, O'Bryant made three field goals. Stringer knocked down a 3-pointer, while Mickey had a field goal and made one of two free throws. The Tigers would take a three-point lead, but couldn't hold off the Hogs.
LSU'S TOP STARTER
O'Bryant did foul out, but he was able to play 31 minutes. Arkansas was unable to control O'Bryant, who finished with 20 points and a career-high 16 rebounds. O'Bryant was 9-of-18 from the field and 2-of-4 at the foul line. Seven of his 16 rebounds came on the offensive end. O'Bryant became the 40th player in LSU history to have 1,000 career points. He now has 1,010 points. The double-double was his sixth of the season and the 23rd of his career.
LSU'S TOP RESERVE
Stringer didn't shoot well, but he contributed 13 points and four assists. Stringer was 4-of-14 from the field, including 3-of-10 on 3-pointers. His last 3-pointer put the Tigers on top 55-54 midway through the second half. Stringer also snagged four rebounds.
LSU'S UNSUNG HERO
Mickey battled valiantly against the quicker Arkansas defense. He scored eight points and grabbed ten rebounds. Mickey missed four of his six field goal attempts, but was 4-of-5 at the foul line. Mickey, who responsible for four of LSU's 17 turnovers, blocked two shots.
Once again, LSU was hurt by pinpoint 3-point shooting by the opposition. The Razorbacks made 59 percent of their 3-point attempts (10-of-17). Meanwhile, the Tigers sank only 25 percent of its shots from behind the arc (6-of-24). Arkansas' overall field goal percentage was 46 percent (27-of-59), while LSU made 39 percent of its shots from the field (28-of-71). In every LSU game except for Memphis and South Carolina, the team with the better field goal percentage has won. The Razorbacks made more free throws than the Tigers attempted. The Hogs were 17-of-25 at the foul line, while the Tigers were 8-of-14. LSU did have a sizeable 46-36 margin on the boards. The Tigers, thanks to O'Bryant, outscored Arkansas in the paint 42-20. LSU committed six more turnovers than the Razorbacks, who had 11.
LSU used its big lineup of O'Bryant and Mickey in the post, Coleman and Martin on the wings and Hickey at point guard. . .It was a rough afternoon for the two starting wings - Coleman and Martin. They combined for just 17 points - nine from Coleman and eight from Martin. Coleman missed seven of his 11 field goal attempts. Martin had just four rebounds. . .After shooting well at Texas A&M, Hickey was just 3-of-11, including 2-of-7 on 3-pointers. He ended with eight points with two assists and one turnover. . .Tim Quarterman was not productive in his 11 minutes. He missed his only two field goal attempts and committed three turnovers. . .John Odo had four points in nine minutes. He had scored a total of four points in the previous 11 SEC games. . .After taking a 57-54 lead with ten minutes to play, the Tigers missed 15 of 20 field goal attempts. . .LSU allowed at least 80 points in a SEC game for the seventh time this season. Tigers opponents reached the 80-point mark five times in 18 league games in 2013. . .Arkansas was the fourth SEC team to make at least half of its 3-point shots against LSU. The Razorbacks shot 59 percent on 3-pointers. The other three teams were Tennessee (53 percent), Alabama (50 percent) and Georgia (56 percent). The Tigers lost all four of those games. . .Three Razorbacks players other than Madden scored in double figures. Clarke had 16 points, while Portis had 15 and Qualls had 13. Clarke also had nine rebounds, while Portis had eight. With his 15 points and eight rebounds, the freshman Portis outplayed Mickey and Martin. . .Madden, who had five assists, made 12 of his 14 foul shots. . .Qualls and Harris combined for 21 points and eight rebounds. Those two players were suspended whenLSU beat the Hogs 88-74 at the PMAC two weeks earlier. . .LSU had won four consecutive games against Arkansas. The Tigers' last defeat at the hands of the Hogs came two seasons ago. LSU has lost four straight games at Bud Walton Arena. Its last victory in Fayetteville occurred during the 2009 season. . .LSU has lost five straight conference road games. Its only road victory came against South Carolina on Jan. 11. . .The Tigers are 15-9 overall, 6-6 in the SEC. LSU is tied with Missouri, Tennessee and Vanderbilt for fifth place. . .Arkansas is 16-8 overall, 5-7 in the SEC. The Razorbacks are tied with Texas A&M for ninth place. . .The paid attendance was 18,904.
FROM THE LOCKER ROOM
Coach Johnny Jones
"We improved today. Arkansas did a great job of striking out first. Our guys were not affected and stayed the course. They played hard in the first half. We came out in the second half and even took the lead. But, Arkansas hit some timely shots, some big shots, notably 3-pointers. They made ten for the game. Then, we missed some scoring opportunities at the rim. We only shot 39 percent because of those missed opportunities around the basket."
LSU will play host to Mississippi State at the PMAC on Wednesday at 7 p.m. The Bulldogs (13-12, 3-9) lost to Auburn 92-82 on Saturday afternoon. The LSU-Mississippi State game will be broadcast on SECTV.