FAYETTEVILLE — In a sort of reverse of the last game between the two, Arkansas beat Texas A&M 76-73 on Saturday in overtime.
Arkansas (14-5, 4-3 SEC) started hot, going 3 of 4 from 3-point range while keeping the Aggies scoreless in the field for the first four and a half minutes. But Texas A&M (15-4, 4-2) wouldn’t go away and forced the Razorbacks into overtime with top scorer JD Notae on the bench with five fouls.
On January 8, Arkansas came back from 17 points to make it a 1-point game down, but Texas A&M made a 3-pointer and free throws to spoil Arkansas’ effort. Saturday was Arkansas battling to avoid a comeback.
Arkansas didn’t score for the first minute and a half of overtime, but free throws from Au’Diese Toney, a three-point play from Davonte Davis and a dunk from Jaylin Williams helped the Razorbacks gain momentum. ‘advance. A Stanley Umude dunk punctuated the win.
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Arkansas led by a whopping 16 in the first half, but Texas A&M led an 8-1 trailing run to cut the lead to 4 at halftime. The Aggies found themselves within a point in the second half, but Notae woke up in attack.
Notae had two first 3-pointers, then missed his next seven shots. When Texas A&M closed in midway through the second half, the SEC’s leading scorer made three of his next four to help Arkansas extend their lead to 10.
Texas A&M did not let go. His transition defense was a major factor in keeping the game close. Arkansas had no quick break points in regulation, and the Aggies blocked four layups.
With about four minutes to play, A&M was back within two minutes. Williams forced an Aggie turnover and Toney went for a quick layup to have it blocked by A&M’s Quenton Jackson. The Aggies got the rebound and scored to tie the game at 56.
A Notae layup and a pair of Umude free throws gave Arkansas a small lead with just over a minute left. Notae fouled out, but Chris Lykes’ free throws made it a 6-point game. But Umude fouled a 3-pointer, Texas A&M made all three free throws and made a 3-pointer to tie the game at 64 and send the game into overtime.
Jackson, Texas A&M’s leading scorer, fouled during overtime. With both teams’ best shooters on the bench, Arkansas managed to survive to claim their fourth straight win since that narrow loss to the Aggies on the road.
Arkansas shot 35 percent from 3 despite being the second-worst 3-point shooting team in the conference. He held the Aggies, the league-leading 3-point team, to 31%. Williams had her fourth double-double of the season with 14 points and 11 rebounds.
Following: Arkansas travels to Ole Miss on Wednesday (6 p.m. CT, SECN).