Arkansas Defeats Little Rock, 79-64; University Unveils Nolan Richardson Court

FAYETTEVILLE – On a day the University unveiled Nolan Richardson Court at Bud Walton Arena, the 2019-20 Razorbacks honored the Hall of Fame coach with a 79-64 exhibition victory over Little Rock. The meeting was the first on the hardwood between the two in-state universities.

Arkansas used a 19-3 run to start the game and a 21-6 run to start the second half to set the stage for the win. Isaiah Joe led all scorers with 25 points, making 8-of-17 from 3-point range. Jeantal Cylla added 13 points and six rebounds while Desi Sills scored 12 points. Point guard Jimmy Whitt Jr., had a team-best nine rebounds.

The turnover battle was nearly even – Arkansas committed 18 and Little Rock 22 – but the Razorbacks made the Trojans pay more for the miscues. Arkansas scored 22 points off Little Rock’s turnovers, while the Trojans only scored eight points off Arkansas’ turnovers.

Nikola Maric led the Trojans with 14 points. Kamani Johnson registered a double-double with 13 points and 11 rebounds.

Arkansas will play the second of its two exhibition games on Friday (Oct. 25). Tip-off versus Southwestern Oklahoma State is set for 7 pm. This exhibition game is part of the 2019-20 season ticket package and regular gameday parking will apply for all lots.

FIRST HALF: Arkansas 35 – Little Rock 26

  • Desi Sills scored the first points for Arkansas, a layup in transition to tie the game 2-2.
  • After allowing the Trojans to score first, Arkansas went on a 10-0 run to force a Little Rock timeout. Overall, Arkansas went on a 14-0 run before the Trojans made a free throw (to make the score 14-3 with 14:10 left).
  • Arkansas led 19-3 at the 12-minute media time out. Joe had seven points and Sills five.
  • Little Rock cut its deficit to four (26-22) before Jeantal Cylla ended a dry spell with a 3-point basket in the left corner to give Arkansas a 29-22 lead with 3:30 left.
  • A 3-pointer by Joe at the 2:47 mark put the Hogs up 10. While the Trojans worked their deficit back down to six (32-26 with 1:22 left), Sills sank a triple with 57 seconds left to provide the halftime score.
  • At the break, Joe led the Razorbacks with 13 points, making 4-of-10 from 3-point range. Sills added 10 points.

SECOND HALF: Arkansas shot 44.8 percent and scored 44 second-half points.

  • Arkansas went on a 10-0 run to start the second half and force a Trojan timeout.
  • Joe drained three 3-pointers as the Hogs took their largest lead (26 points) and extended the advantage to 56-30 at the 14:46 mark. Overall, Arkansas out-scored the Trojans 21-6 over the first six-and-a-half minutes.
  • The Trojans trimmed their deficit to 14 (65-51) with 7:04 left.
  • Cylla put Arkansas back up 20, 73-53, with a free throw at the 4:43 mark.
  • An 8-2 spurt by Little Rock once again made it a 14-point game with 3:39 left, but that is as close as the Trojans would get.


  • The exhibition with Little Rock not only was the first meeting between the schools but the two NCAA Division I programs were able to play an exhibition through an NCAA waiver as the game was for charity, benefitting Arkansans impacted by flooding this past spring.
  • Arkansas’ starters were Desi Sills (G) – Isaiah Joe (G) – Jimmy Whitt Jr. (G) – Adrio Bailey (F) – Jeantal Cylla (F).
  • Isaiah Joe, who led the team in charges taken last season, started the game on the first possession by taking a charge.
  • Arkansas has won 31 straight exhibition games and 25 straight by at double digits.
  • Had this been an actual game:
  • Isaiah Joe’s 17 3-point attempts would have been the most since Rotnei Clark took 17 vs. ETSU (11/27/09)
  • Arkansas’ 35 3-point attempts would have been the most since the Hogs attempted 35 last season vs. Montana State.
  • Arkansas was out-rebounded, 42-37. However, Arkansas was only out-rebounded 17-16 in the second half and Arkansas only allowed the Trojans to get five offensive rebounds.
  • Arkansas shot 77.8 percent from the free throw line (14-of-18). Arkansas only shot 77.8 percent or better four times last season.

For more­­ information on Arkansas Men’s Basketball, follow @RazorbackMBB on Twitter.