FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – The score may not have been close, but Arkansas got a physical test against NCAA Division II member Southwest (Mo.) Baptist Friday in Bud Walton Arena.
The Razorbacks played without senior guard Eric Ferguson (broken nose) and sophomore forward Darian Townes (sprained toe), but still rolled to an 86-49 victory. Despite the lopsided score, the Bearcats played aggressively and were tough inside with 7-2, 295-pound center Frans Steyn. Southwest Baptist, which was 16-13 a year ago, was whistled for 30 fouls with Arkansas going 31-of-43 at the line. The Razorbacks shot 72.1 percent at the line, 47.3 percent from the floor (26-55) and 30 percent on threes (3-10). UA limited the Bearcats to 28.6 percent (16-56), including 23.3 percent on threes (7-30).
Junior Ronnie Brewer paced the Hogs with 22 points in 22 minutes, going eight-of-15 from the floor. He also had three rebounds, two assists and five steals.
Brewer scored nine points in less than a two-minute stretch in the first half to break the game open. Vincent Hunter scored five consecutive Razorback points to give Arkansas a 17-9 lead before Brewer’s scoring spree. The preseason All-American scored on a pair of driving layups, hit a three and made another layup after a Jonathon Modica bucket to push the lead to 28-9 with 8:58 left in the first period.
Arkansas stretched the lead to 26, 42-16 on two Modica free throws, before settling for a 44-21 margin at the half. In the second period, Dontell Jefferson’s jumper at 11:52 gave the Razorbacks a 70-28 lead. UA took its largest lead at 76-33 on two Steven Hill free throws with 9:45 remaining.
Modica finished with 15 points, a game-high nine rebounds and three assists. Charles Thomas scored 15 points on five-of-eight shooting, and added five rebounds, two assists and two steals. Hunter was two-of-four from the floor and six-of-nine at the line, finishing with 10 points and four rebounds.
Hill had eight points, four rebounds and four blocked shots, and Jefferson had six points, five rebounds, five assists and two blocked shots.
Jason Jemison led SBU with 13 points. Steyn had nine points and seven rebounds.
Arkansas turned the ball over 18 times, but had 15 assists, seven blocked shots and 10 steals while forcing 25 Bearcat turnovers.
The Razorbacks play their final exhibition game on Saturday, Nov. 12, at 6:35 p.m. against LSU-Shreveport.
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