FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Jemal Farmer scored 18 points, mostly in the second half, to lead the Arkansas Razorback men’s basketball team to a 91-54 victory over Mississippi Valley State at Bud Walton Arena on Saturday afternoon.
Arkansas (3-5) had four players score in double digits while all 11 players scored in the win. Mississippi Valley State (1-7) was outrebounded by 17 and allowed the Razorbacks to score 44 points in the paint.
"I’m glad that we got the win," Arkansas head coach John Pelphrey said. "I hope that we continue to improve and was happy that we got to play some other guys. You can still see the inexperience and we have to get better. I thought that we made progress."
The Razorbacks got off to another solid start on Saturday as they went on an early 5-0 run to make the score 7-2 and eventually went up 12-6 at the first media timeout. Arkansas built its lead by driving to the basket and forcing the Delta Devils to guard at the perimeter opening lanes on the interior. The Razorbacks also did a very good job of breaking the Mississippi Valley State’s full court pressure defense which led to several easy baskets.
Senior Steph Welsh also had a hot hand from the floor helping the Arkansas cause. Welsh scored 13 points during the opening 20 minutes of action including three three-point baskets. Welsh’s first half totals were season bests for the Newport News, Va., native. Moving the ball around the court well, nine of Arkansas’ 10 players that saw time in the opening half put points on the board. The Razorbacks also out-rebounded the Delta Devils 19-10 and hit 10 of 13 free throws.
A 21-point game at the break, Arkansas continued to use the formula that led to success in the first half throughout the second 20 minutes. Utilizing the whole bench with no player stepping on the court for more than 29 minutes, Arkansas was able to shoot 51 percent from the floor while holding the Delta Devils to just 30 percent. The Razorbacks also had a very good night at the free throw line hitting 17 of 24 shots for 71 percent.
Joining Farmer (17) and Welsh (15) in double digits were freshman Marshawn Powell (15) and freshman point guard Julysses Nobles (10). Powell and Farmer each pulled down seven rebounds to lead all players in the game. Arkansas also got solid point guard play from Nobles who, along with his 10 points, grabbed six rebounds, had six assists, just one turnover and two steals.
Arkansas was solid on defense during the game with six steals, but scored 23 points off 17 Mississippi Valley State turnovers. The Razorbacks also grabbed a season high 18 offensive rebounds.
The Razorbacks are back in Bud Walton Arena on Monday, Dec. 7, when they take on the Delaware State Hornets in their final game before finals. Tip for the Delaware State game is set for 7 p.m. For more information regarding Razorback men’s basketball or University of Arkansas athletics, please visit ArkansasRazorbacks.com.