FAYETTEVILLE – Senior Lauren Ervin earned her third consecutive double-double, scoring 19 points and grabbing 15 rebounds to lead the University of Arkansas Lady Razorback basketball team to an 89-62 win against Sam Houston State at Bud Walton Arena on Tuesday, setting the university record for best start to a season in school history.
The Lady Razorback win moves its record to 9-0, breaking the previous best (8-0) set during the 1998-99 season. Sam Houston falls to 1-8.
“We’re excited about being 9-0,” Arkansas head coach Tom Collen said. “The team has adapted pretty well to the system and our offense is getting better. Our confidence is growing and we’re heading in the right direction.”
“We’re pretty happy about (the record),” Ervin said. “We just want to keep it going and not let this get to our head.”
Arkansas didn’t waste any time getting on the board first and taking the Bearkats out of their rhythm early. After getting a 4-0 lead in the opening moments, Sam Houston closed the gap to 7-4, but a 10-0 run over the next two minutes gave Arkansas all the cushion it needed to cruise to victory.
The Lady Razorbacks shot 56 percent from the floor in the opening half while two Arkansas players hit for double figures, Whitney Jones and Lauren Ervin. Most impressive and Jones and Ervin’s efforts were that the points came in limited action as neither played more than 10 minutes.
“The offense is getting better,” Collen said. “They know where they need to be and it flows right now. I’m not sure they always realize that, but I think that they are learning and we are shooting the ball well. We’ve established that we need to go inside first and it is showing up in the numbers. Once teams scout us and take things away from us, we’ll need to get better.”
Arkansas’ 51-point half was its best first half scoring of the year, eclipsing the 47 point game it produced in the season opener against Lipscomb.
Not relenting in the second half, Arkansas’ starters poured it on to open the second half and increased its lead to as many as 30. Mass substitutions for the Lady Razorbacks came late in the contest and the change in personnel didn’t faze any aspect of the Arkansas game. While Arkansas’ scoring may have not been as prominent in the second half, its shot selection was just as good as the first 20 minutes. The Lady Razorbacks maintained its shooting percentage from the first half, but used more of the shot clock than it did earlier in the contest.
For SHSU, Lydia Gonzales was nearly automatic from the floor in the first half going five for six and scoring 11 points. Included in her one-miss masterpiece was an unbelievable side arm three-point shot around the outstretched arms of an Arkansas defender just before the half. She would end the game leading all scorers with 20 points.
The Lady Razorbacks take a short break for finals before returning to the floor on Dec. 13, when they host Northwestern State in Hot Springs, Ark. For more information about Lady Razorback soccer or about Arkansas women’s athletics, please go to LADYBACKS.com.