FAYETTEVILLE - The University of Arkansas women's basketball will host Ole Miss on Sunday to complete the regular season conference slate. The game is senior day, as Arkansas will honor four seniors - Erin Gatling
, Kelsey Hatcher
, Sarah Watkins
and Quistelle Williams
- in a pregame ceremony before the 2 p.m. tip.
Arkansas' four seniors have represented 45 percent of the team's scoring this season. The duo of Watkins and Williams has been a formidable post tandem, and are the team's leading scorers. Watkins leads the team with 12.6 points per game, while Williams is second at 10.1 points per game, and the team's leading rebounder at 7.2 rebounds per game. Watkins is 13th in the conference in scoring, 11th in blocked shots (1.3 per game) and fifth in free throw percentage (77.7 percent), while Williams is 12th in the conference in rebounding. Watkins has four games with at least 20 points, including a career high 28 points in this season's first matchup between the Razorbacks and Rebels.
Gatling has been a solid contributor off the bench this season, averaging 5.5 points per game including a career high 23 points in a win at Missouri. Hatcher, a redshirt senior, has not played since Jan. 6 due to injury, but averaged 4.3 points per game and led Arkansas to an overtime win at Tulsa by tying the game with a three pointer at the end of regulation.
"The seniors we are losing are a big part of building this program," Arkansas head coach Tom Collen
said. "Quistelle Williams
is finally getting the opportunity to start and has shown up well. Erin Gatling
came back, accepted a role, waited for an opportunity, and her senior year she got that opportunity and she helps us win games. Sarah Watkins
has been a real centerpiece for us throughout her career. She's going to go down as one of the best players in our history."
"It's winding down," senior Sarah Watkins
said. "I just want to give everything I've got. It's really special to be recognized for being here for four years. We're focusing on Ole Miss now, and we need to be prepared, go out and get a win.
Ole Miss is 9-19, and 2-13 in the SEC. This is the second meeting between the schools this year, and the Razorbacks won 77-66 in Oxford, Miss. in January. The Rebels have three players averaging double figures - Tia Faleru with 11.7 points per game, Valencia McFarland with 11.3 points per game, and Diara Moore with 10.4 points per game.
"Ole Miss is a special game," Collen said. "They have nothing to lose. They have every right to come in here and play loose. Those are the types of the teams that are scary. You can't take wins for granted in this league. It's senior night, and we want to play well and want our seniors to go out playing well."