SEC win number one is in the books. It was a "hold on to your seat" kind of finish, but @RazorbackWBB was able to take down Missouri 69-66 on the road on Sunday. So, the team not only knows it can win a conference game, but also do it away from Bud Walton Arena. That same confidence will be put to the test tonight at 6 P.M. in Gainesville.
The Hogs face a Florida squad that just knocked off No. 6 Kentucky in Lexington. So, if Arkansas wants to see another team that’s high on life, it need just look across the court. This has also historically been a very tough matchup for the Razorbacks with the all-time record favoring the Gators 22-8.
How can Arkansas come away with a win at Florida? Here are some keys to tonight’s matchup.
Jaterra Bonds. Jaterra Bonds. Jaterra Bonds. Hopefully, the repetition makes that stick. Plain and simple, she has to be contained. UF’s leading scorer is the Gators. She’s a Gainesville native, averaging 17 points a game, and makes them go. Bonds constantly attacks and gets to the free throw line, where she’s shooting 81-percent this year. The senior has singlehandedly put up 10 or more attempts from the charity stripe in a game five times this season. Arkansas has accomplished that feat three times COMBINED. Play to Arkansas’ pace. When you look at Florida’s roster, you see eight players that see time. Intuitively, you might think, "OK, all the Hogs need to do is run and they’ll totally wear them out." However, that’s just how the Gators want to play. I watched them run with Kentucky all game and UF never wore down. The Razorbacks need to change speeds and execute some solid halfcourt offense to create good shots. By no means is running the answer tonight. Start to knock down the three again. The Hogs received a significant boost in the non-conference from their outside shooting. McKenzie Adams alone made half of her threes before SEC play started. In the previous two games, Arkansas has shot 26-percent from deep. That number will have to rise if the Razorbacks want to make noise in the SEC.
Jeri and I will join you for the Razorback Courtside Show at 5:45 tonight. We’ll preview the matchup and have an exclusive pregame conversation with head coach Tom Collen, leading up to a 6 P.M. tipoff between Arkansas and Florida.
Here are our affiliates: KOSM-FM 92.1 in Northwest Arkansas; KURM-AM 790 in Rogers; KFPW-FM 94.5 and 1230 AM in Fort Smith; and KABZ-FM 103.7 in Little Rock.
In the words of the legendary Charles Osgood, I’ll see you on the radio.
For more information on Arkansas women’s basketball, follow @RazorbackWBB. To keep up with Alex, follow @arperlman on Twitter.