LSU Defeats Arkansas in Baton Rouge
BY ANDRES FOCIL
Baton Rouge, La. – The Arkansas Razorbacks lost in their bid for a seventh straight victory as the LSU Tigers hung on for a 41-38 win over the Hogs Friday afternoon in Baton Rouge.
Trailing 41-25 with 8:21 left in the game, the Hogs began a furious rally behind quarterback Zak Clark.
Clark drove the Hogs 80 yards in six plays and capped the drive with an 11-yard touchdown pass to George Wilson that cut the deficit to 41-31 after the two-point attempt failed.
Arkansas then held the Tigers to three and out on the ensuing possession. Clark then marched the Razorbacks 57 yards in six plays and hooked up with Spark Hamilton on a 15-yard TD pass to make it a 41-38 game with 2:27 remaining.
But, the Tigers were able to maintain possession as LSU quarterback Rohan Davey converted a third and 13 with a 31-yard pass to Josh Reed with less than a minute to play to seal the victory.
For the game, Arkansas finished with 412 yards of offense, 179 rushing and 266 passing, while LSU managed 518 yards of offense with 196 coming via the ground game and 359 through the air.
Clark completed 10-of-22 passes for 137 yards with two touchdowns, while Matt Jones was 5-of-10 passing for 118 yards with two touchdowns.
George Wilson led the Hogs with 115 yards receiving on seven receptions and a TD.
For LSU, Davey connected on 19-of-33 pass attempts for 359 yards with three touchdowns and four interceptions.
Josh Reed hauled in seven catches for 183 yards and two scores for the Tigers.
Jones led the Hogs with 73 yards rushing on 13 carries and scored one touchdown. LSU’s LaBrandon Toefield led all rushers with 173 yards on 30 carries and three scores.
The two teams exchanged scores in the third quarter as the Tigers led 27-25 entering the final period of play.
LSU connected on a 60-yard scoring strike from Davey to Michael Clayton to give the Tigers a 27-19 lead with 8:17 left in the third quarter.
The Hogs answered with a big play of their own as Matt Jones hooked up with Sparky Hamilton on a 61-yard touchdown pass to cut the LSU lead to 27-25 after the two-point conversion attempt failed.
LSU added two more scores in the fourth quarter, one on a 38-yard pass from Davey to Reed and another on a 17-yard run by Toefield for a 41-25 advantage before the Hogs began their rally.
In the first half, each team matched big play for big play as the Tigers held a slim 20-19 lead at intermission.
On the first possession of the game, Toefield broke through the middle of the Razorback defense and raced 62 yards for a touchdown and a quick 7-0 LSU lead.
The Razorbacks responded with nine-play drive that culminated with three-yard scoring run by Matt Jones to knot the score at 7-7.
Arkansas intercepted LSU quarterback Rohan Davey on the ensuing possession inside the Tigers’ 50-yard line. But LSU’s defense stiffened and forced the Hogs to punt.
The Razorbacks picked off another Davey pass on the next possession and returned it to the LSU 38-yard line.
The Hogs marched 38 yards in nine plays and took a 10-7 lead on Brennan O’Donohoe’s 27-yard field goal with 1:00 remaining in the first quarter.
Arkansas extended its lead to 13-7 midway through the second quarter when O’Donohoe connected on a 20-yard field goal.
After an exchange of possessions, LSU took a 14-13 lead when Toefield scored his second touchdown of the day on a nine yard run.
Arkansas again capitalized off an LSU turnover to take a 19-14 lead. The Razorbacks recovered a fumble by Davey at the Arkansas 31-yard line and regained the lead when Jones hit Richard Smith on a 15-yard scoring pass.
The Hogs’ two-point conversion attempt was no good.
The scoring was not finished however, as LSU marched 68 yards in 28 seconds to take a 20-19 lead. Josh Reed hauled in a 20-yard scoring pass from Davey to give the Tigers the lead. LSU also failed on a two-point conversion attempt.
The two teams combined for 483 yards of offense in the half with the Tigers holding a 291 to 192 advantage over the Hogs.
The loss ends the Razorbacks’ quest for a Southeastern Conference Western Division title and puts the Hogs at 7-4 overall and 4-4 in the SEC. The win upped LSU’s record to 7-3 overall and 4-3 in the conference. LSU and Auburn will battle Dec. 1 for the SEC Western Division championship.
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