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Razorbacks fall in SEC opener

The University of Arkansas men’s basketball team (9-5, 0-1) fell on the road to the Texas A&M Aggies (11-3, 1-0), 69-51, in the 2012-13 Southeastern Conference opener.
COLLEGE STATION, Texas – The University of Arkansas men’s basketball team (9-5, 0-1) fell on the road to the Texas A&M Aggies (11-3, 1-0), 69-51, in the 2012-13 Southeastern Conference opener. The Razorbacks were unable to counter an Aggie offense that exploded in the opening minutes of the second half to take control of a close game.

Arkansas was led by sophomore BJ Young, who scored 13 points and grabbed four rebounds. Freshman Anthlon Bell also had a solid game, as he recorded nine points off three three-pointers. As a team the Razorbacks shot nearly 42 percent from the floor and knocked down 32 of their 51 points in the paint.

“I thought that we did some good things in the first half,” Arkansas head coach Mike Anderson said. “They took the fight to us and it showed in the rebounding. The tempo favored them and they wanted it more.”

Arkansas started off a slow in the opening minutes, but regrouped as it went on a 7-0 run beginning at the 12:56 mark to take the lead, 15-12. The Razorbacks would hold the Aggies scoreless for over three minutes during the 7-0 run. With 3:09 remaining in the first, the Razorbacks were all tied up with the Aggies (24-24), but it was Texas A&M who was able to pull away at the half, as they shut the Razorbacks out for the remainder of the half. During that time the Aggies went on a 5-0 run and went into the locker room with a five-point lead, 29-24.

Despite being behind at the half the Razorbacks were putting up a staunch defensive effort, with four blocked shots in the first half. The Razorbacks also recorded two steals. Young led the Razorbacks in the first with seven points off 3-7 shooting with three assists and two rebounds.

Arkansas was again not sharp as the second half began, not scoring a basket until the 17:08 mark when Mardracus Wade made a layup. The Aggies on the other hand started the second half rolling, as they hit pay dirt on four of their first five attempts. By the first media timeout the Aggies held a 16-point lead, 47-31. The Razorbacks were unable to overcome the deficit, coming as close as 14.

The Razorbacks return to Bud Walton Arena on Saturday, Jan. 12, as they host Vanderbilt in the SEC home opener at 5 p.m. The game will be televised on FSN.
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