Razorbacks sting Hornets
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Freshman Marshawn Powell scored a game high 21 points and grabbed nine rebounds to lead the Arkansas men’s basketball team to a 71-53 victory over Delaware State at Bud Walton Arena on Monday night in Fayetteville.
The Razorback (4-5) win marks the first time this season that Arkansas has won back-to-back contests while Delaware State (4-3) drops its second game in row.
"I’m happy with the win," Arkansas head coach John Pelphrey said. "It was a long, hard grind tonight. Delaware State has a challenging style of play and we knew what we were dealing with. Taking a look at the numbers, I thought we did a good job of doubling [Frisco] Sandridge. We’ve had a large number of games in a short period of time so it’s good to get a break and take care of ourselves."
The Razorbacks got off to a solid start offensively thanks to Powell who scored eight of the Hogs first 10 points before the first media timeout. Feeding the ball down into the paint, Powell was able to get some easy baskets while also making shots from the 10-15-foot range. Thanks to Powell’s play and two Razorback steals on defense, Arkansas was able to jump out to a 10-4 lead.
A pesky Delaware State team never let the Razorbacks get too far ahead and even fought back to within a basket but back back-to-back three-pointers by Powell and Stef Welsh put Arkansas up by nine, their largest lead of the opening half to that point. The Razorbacks increased their advantage to 12 in the opening 20 minutes and after Rotnei Clarke’s second three in the final three minutes, Arkansas led by 11 at the break.
Arkansas and Delaware State would trade baskets in the second half with the Hornets working their way back to within six on a pair of occasions before the Razorbacks pulled back ahead, and this time for good. At the midway point in the period the Razorbacks finally began to pull away from their opponent by hitting their shots on the floor and taking care of the basketball leading to an 18-5 run.
Powell’s 21 points mark the second time in his young Razorback career that the first-year player from Newport News, Va., has eclipsed the 20-point barrier. He scored a career high 29 against Appalachian State on Nov. 20. Clarke also scored in double figures with 14 thanks to four three-point baskets.
Arkansas chose its shots well throughout the game as they hit 65.9 percent from the field and 61.5 percent from three. In the final 20 minutes of play, Arkansas shot an astounding 81.3 percent from the field and 80 percent from three. The Razorback struggles came from the free throw line, but their hot shooting during the contest offset their struggles. The Razorbacks had 10 players score points in the contest and it was the second time in as many games that at least 10 Arkansas players contributed to the Razorbacks’ final score.
Delaware State was led by Marcus Neal who scored 18 points and grabbed seven rebounds. The Hornets leading scorer coming into the game, Sandridge, was held scoreless, going 0-4 from the floor.
The Razorbacks take an eight-day break for finals and return to the court on Dec. 16 when they host Alabama State at Bud Walton Arena for a 7 p.m. tip. For more information regarding Razorback men’s basketball or University of Arkansas athletics, please visit ArkansasRazorbacks.com.