|Updated: 12/17/2011 5:04 pm
||Published: 12/17/2011 5:01 pm
FAYETTEVILLE, AR. – Freshman Rashad Madden had 10 points and a career-high seven assists to lead the University of Arkansas men's basketball team over Southeastern Louisiana, 62-55, Saturday afternoon at Bud Walton Arena.
Arkansas improves to 6-3 with the victory, including 6-0 at Bud Walton Arena. Southeastern Louisiana drops to 5-4 with the loss.
In a game that featured five ties and four lead changes in the first half, the Razorback defensive pressure wore down a pesky Lions team. Arkansas used a 20-6 run over a stretch at the end of the first half and beginning of the second to take control of the game.
“I’m proud of our guys for gutting it out and finding a way to win against a team that just wouldn’t go away,” said Arkansas head coach Mike Anderson. “Coming off of the games we’ve played, we’ll take the win.”
Down 28-23 with less than four minutes left in the first half, the Razorbacks got two free throws from Madden to come within three and turned up their defensive intensity. Arkansas forced turnovers and score baskets on three straight possessions, igniting a 12-0 run that had the Bud Walton Arena crowd chanting its support. Southeastern Louisiana netted two free throws before the end of the half, but the Razorbacks turned their five point deficit into a 35-30 lead heading into the break.
“Our defense was the difference in the game,” Anderson said.
Arkansas began the second half with a 6-2 run to continue extending its lead. Freshman forward Devonta Abron hit a layup to give the Razorbacks a 37-32 lead one minute into the half, and sophomore Rickey Scott netted two straight jumpers to increase the lead to 41-32.
Arkansas found its first double digit lead of the game with 11:03 to play when Madden sunk a three-pointer. Southeastern Louisiana hung close to the Razorbacks, cutting the lead to 52-47 with 8:44 to play. The Lions went on a 5-0 run late in the game and cut the lead to 60-55 with 33 seconds to play on a three-pointer by DeShawn Patterson, but junior guard Julysses Nobles ensured the Arkansas victory with two free throws with 30 seconds to play.
In addition to his team-leading 10 points and seven assists, Madden had two steals and four rebounds. Abron, Scott and sophomore Mardracus Wade added eight points apiece. In one of Arkansas’ most balanced statistical efforts this season, eight players had at least five points, six players had at least three rebounds, and four players had two steals.
The Razorbacks shot 46.9 percent from the floor for the game while holding the Lions to 32.7 percent shooting. Arkansas had assists on nine of its 13 field goals in the first half, and 14 of 23 in the game. Arkansas forced 20 Southeastern Louisiana turnovers, which they turned into 24 points. The Razorbacks had 11 steals as a team.
Senior center Elgin Bailey led the Lions with 12 points and 12 rebounds, and senior Deshawn Patterson had 11 points and five assists.
Saturday’s game was the first of a seven game home stand for the Razorbacks, who return to action Tuesday, Dec. 20 against Eastern Kentucky inside Bud Walton Arena at 7 p.m. For more information about Razorback basketball, please log on to ArkansasRazorbacks.com