FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Playing in its final non-conference tune-up of the season, the University of Arkansas women’s basketball team rolled past visiting Grambling State, 77-35, at Bud Walton Arena Monday evening and collected its 10th win of the season. The Razorbacks had four players score in double figures, including a career-high 12 points from freshman McKinley Bostad, as Arkansas raced out to a 46-10 halftime advantage.
Arkansas will open up Southeastern Conference play on the road at Ole Miss Friday evening.
All nine Razorbacks played double-digit minutes and all nine scored and grabbed a rebound. Sophomore Kelsey Brooks found herself in double figures for the 12th time in as many games this season, pouring in a game-high 15 points and grabbing seven rebounds. Junior Melissa Wolff recorded her fourth double-double of the season, pairing 12 points to go along with 10 rebounds. Freshman Katie Powell was the fourth Hog in double digits, tying a career-high with 11 points, while also securing eight boards.
Sophomore Khadijah West dominated the backboards, ripping down a career-best 12 rebounds. As a team, the Razorbacks recorded 65 rebounds and outrebounded the Tigers, 65-28. In fact, Arkansas had as many offensive rebounds, 28, as Grambling State had total rebounds. Arkansas has outrebounded 10 of its 12 opponents this season.
Arkansas’ rebounding advantage led to 25 second-chance points, which helped to offset its 38.2 percent shooting from the field. Grambling State was held to 26.8 percent shooting, including a 1-for-12 mark from three-point distance.
Arkansas shared the rock, as three players recorded at least four assists, including a game-high five dimes from Brooks. The Razorbacks assisted on 19 of its 29 field goals.
The Hogs never trailed in the game, as Brooks knocked down a triple on the Razorbacks’ first possession of the game. Grambling State was held without a field goal for a 4:16 stretch early in the first half as Arkansas built an 11-4 edge on 47 percent shooting. Arkansas’ defense held strong for the rest of the half, allowing the Tigers to muster just 10 points on five field goals. Ten points is the lowest Arkansas has held a team in any half this season and is the lowest point total given up by the Arkansas D since allowing 15 to Mississippi Valley State on Dec. 28, 2013. All nine Razorbacks saw extended minutes in the first half.
Arkansas opened the second half with a 36 point lead, but it was the Tigers who scored the half’s first four points, encouraging head coach Jimmy Dykes to pull four of his starters off the floor and sub in four bench players.
The bench would prove to be effective for the Razorbacks, however, as the bench tallied a season-high 34 points. In fact, Arkansas had 14 bench points at the half, which would rank as the third-most in a game this season before the Hogs added to that total in the second half. In addition to Bostad’s 12 and Powell’s 11, junior Joey Bailey chipped in seven points and West tallied four off the pine.
Arkansas would go on to outscore Grambling 31-25 in the second frame for a 77-35 win, its second-largest margin of victory this season.
The Razorbacks have a quick start to SEC play, opening on the road at Ole Miss on Friday and then bouncing right back with a home game on Sunday against Texas A&M.
“We did a lot of things in the second half that I don’t like at all. We gave up drives, we didn’t guard the ball well, we gave up second shots, we let them score on us. Our goal was to hold them to 30 points and they get 35 on us. People said you’re too tough on them, it doesn’t matter. There’s a certain standard we’re supposed to play to and we didn’t meet that standard in the second half. Overall, I’m pleased, we’re 10-2 in non-conference play. We’ve played a very, very hard, difficult schedule.” – head coach Jimmy Dykes
POST GAME NOTES
– Arkansas improved to 7-0 all-time against Grambling State
– Sophomore Kelsey Brooks has scored in double figures in all 12 games this season after she tallied 15 points tonight.
– Freshman McKinley Bostad recorded a career-high 12 points on 5-of-8 shooting, including seven in the first half
– Sophomore Khadijah West pulled down a career-high 12 rebounds
– Junior Melissa Wolff recorded her fourth double-double of the season and the sixth of her career, scoring 12 points and grabbing 10 rebounds. Arkansas is 6-0 in games in which she records a double-double.
– Arkansas held Grambling to just 10 first-half points, the lowest point total the Razorbacks have allowed in any half this season. Giving up only 10 points in a half also marked the first time Arkansas has held an opponent to under 15 points in a half since holding Mississippi Valley State to 15 on Dec. 28, 2013.
– Arkansas additionally held Grambling to just 20 percent shooting in the first half, the lowest percentage Arkansas has allowed in a half this season and the lowest since holding Mississippi Valley State to 20 percent in a half on Dec. 28, 2013.
– Arkansas has outrebounded 10 of its 12 opponents this season, after holding a 65-28 edge on the glass against Grambling.
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