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Arkansas Razorbacks 89, Mount St. Mary’s 76: No Trouble

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NCAA Basketball: Arkansas at Minnesota Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

After what feels like a long layoff from last week’s disappointing loss to Minnesota, Arkansas’ basketball team finally took the court back in the friendly confines of Bud Walton Arena and promptly dispatched an overmatched Mount St. Mary’s squad 89-76.

The Mount is not expected to be one of Arkansas’ tougher opponents this season, but it was still nice to see the Razorbacks rebound from last week. The Hogs were back to making jump shots (8-19 from 3, 47.8% from the field) and playing decent better defense.

Arkansas gave up the first couple of baskets, but then the Hogs took the early lead on an 11-0 run and continued to lead throughout the game. They struggled to totally put Mount away, but put toghether another 11-0 run in the second half, and the lead kept slowly growing until it finally reached 20 points with about 5 minutes left.

Four Razorbacks reached double figures. Daryl Macon, Jaylen Barford, Dustin Thomas, and Dusty Hannahs all scored between 12 and 15 points. Macon and Barford came off the bench for Arkansas for the first time this season and provided an immediate spark for the team when they did enter the game. We’ll see if that continues in future games. Mike Anderson said he started Anton Beard and Manny Watkins in their place to set a more defensive tone. Anderson likes to say he has 8 or 9 starters on his team when asked about starting lineups. He’s said it several times over the years, and made the similarly dismissive point again tonight.

The only real concern from the game continues to be the aggressiveness of Moses Kingsley on the offensive end. Kingsley only scored 1 point in the first half and finished with 9, but much of that came after the outcome was decided. How good will this Arkansas team be if Moses doesn’t average in double figures? We don’t know. The glimpse we saw against a Power 5 team in Minnesota last week wasn’t very promising. It feels like that’s going to have to change as the season progresses.

There are still a couple more cupcake-ish teams coming to Bud Walton before Houston returns to Fayetteville on December 6th.