NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Junior Marshawn Powell, sophomore BJ Young and freshman Michael Qualls led the University of Arkansas men’s basketball team with double-digit scoring efforts in the Razorbacks’ 75-72 loss to Vanderbilt in the second round of the 2013 Southeastern Conference Men’s Basketball Tournament on Thursday night at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tenn. Arkansas cut a 16-point second-half deficit to just two, but were unable to overcome the Vanderbilt lead.
Young was the leading scorer for Arkansas with 16 points off 6-of-13 shooting. The sophomore also chipped in five rebounds and a team-high three assists. Powell nearly had a double-double in the contest, notching 13 points and a game-high nine rebounds. Qualls tallied 10 points in the contest and added four boards.
Arkansas out-rebounded the Commodores 39-37 and the Razorback defense forced 12 Vanderbilt turnovers in the loss.
“Congratulations to Vanderbilt. They shot the ball really well and had some guys have career days,” Razorback head coach Mike Anderson said. “With the style we play we are never out of the game, even down to the last 30 seconds. In the second half we sped things up and that allowed us to get back into the game.”
After an initial run by Arkansas Vanderbilt would begin to break away, growing a lead to as many as 14, 31-17. The Razorbacks began to chip away at the Commodore edge, going on a 13-7 run to close the first half, cutting the deficit to just eight, 38-30.
Leading Arkansas in the first was Clarke and Qualls with six points apiece. Powell led the Razorbacks on the glass with five rebounds.
To start the second half the Razorbacks came out strong, closing the gap to just four points after a pair of free throws by Powell, 38-34. Vanderbilt would mount a run of their own and grow the largest lead of the contest, 16 with 10:42 remaining in the game. The Razorbacks weren’t done, as they again began to mount a comeback. With 6:09 remaining in the contest Clarke would knock down a jumper to start a 6-0 Razorback run to close the gap to seven, 64-57.
Arkansas again found itself down by six with 2:43 remaining on the clock when Powell came up big with a steal and a breakaway layup to make it a four-point game, 70-66. With 50 seconds left on the clock Young came up with a defensive rebound to give Arkansas possession and was fouled, sending him to the charity stripe. Young knocked down both free shots and cut the gap to just two, 70-68. However, the Razorbacks were unable to get over the hump in the remaining seconds of the contest and would fall to the Commodores, 75-72.
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