FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Arkansas made short work of Auburn on Saturday, using its size advantage and a strong overall performance to post a 95-59 Southeastern Conference victory over the Tigers at Bud Walton Arena.
The 36-point margin of victory, in front of a season-high crowd of 19,162, is the second-largest ever in an SEC game for the Razorbacks. UA beat Mississippi State by 57, 115-58, on Feb. 20, 1993.
Three days after the 66-63 overtime loss at LSU, when an apparent game-winning three-pointer by Michael Jones with 1.8 seconds to play was ruled a two-pointer, the Hogs took the suspense out of this one early.
Auburn, 9-8 overall and 0-4 in the SEC, got two three-pointers from Nathan Watson and one each from Quinnel Brown and Ian Young to take an 18-12 lead seven minutes into the game.
Arkansas, 14-5 overall and 2-4 in the SEC, battled back and took one-point leads on buckets by Jones and Eric Ferguson, but a three by Frank Tolbert tied the game at 31-31.
Olu Famutimi hit a three for the Hogs and Arkansas outscored the Tigers 14-2 over the final 5:21 of the first half to take a 45-33 lead at the break. Following Famutimi’s three and two free throws by Darian Townes, Young made two free throws to get Auburn within 36-33. Ronnie Brewer answered with a 17-footer and scored on a layup after a steal. After an AU turnover, Townes hit Michael Jones for a layup, who was fouled and completed the three-point play, and Brewer closed the half with two free throws.
In the second half, Townes hit a jumper, and Brewer and Famutimi two dunks before Daniel Hayles made a jumper for the Tigers at the 17:41 mark, the first Auburn bucket since 5:21 of the first half.
Toney Douglas, the SEC’s leading scorer coming in at 19.8 points per game, was held scoreless in the first half but made a layup and a three to pull Auburn within 60-46 with 13:05 remaining. UA responded with a 24-4 run. Brewer scored eight in the eight-minute stretch, including a layup, a three-pointer and three free throws. Dontell Jefferson had five in the run, which gave the Hogs an 84-50 lead with 4:47 remaining.
Auburn, with the 6-6 Brown the only player in its lineup taller than 6-5, had trouble against Arkansas’ larger lineup. The Razorbacks shot 54.2 percent for the game, marking the seventh time this season they’ve topped the 50 percent mark, while holding AU to 35.6 percent. UA also made nine-of-19 threes (.474) and 22-of-28 free throws (.786). The Razorbacks had 19 assists, led by Ferguson’s six with no turnovers, and just eight turnovers while stealing the ball 10 times, the 10th time this year UA has had 10 or more steals in a game.
Brewer led Arkansas with a career-high tying 23 points and seven rebounds. He hit seven-of-12 shots, and added three assists with no turnovers and four steals. Famutimi was six-of-nine for 14 points, and he added four assists with no turnovers. Townes hit four-of-six shots and five-of-six free throws for 13 points, and had five rebounds. Jonathon Modica was four-of-six for 12 points with four rebounds, and Jones had 10 points and five boards.
Young led Auburn with 16 points, with 13 coming in the first half, while Watson had 15. Douglas finished with eight.
Arkansas is off on Wednesday before playing host to No. 8 Kentucky on Saturday at 2:30 p.m. in a game nationally televised by CBS Sports.