MSU will get back on the court Thursday night against Ole Miss, while Mizzou will also play Thursday against Vanderbilt.
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - It took three overtimes, career nights from Dominque Wilson and Jhasmin Bowen and five players fouled out but the University of Arkansas women's basketball team hung on for a 91-80 triple overtime win at Alabama in Southeastern Conference play in Tuscaloosa, Ala., Sunday.
The win moves the Razorbacks to 16-8 overall and 4-7 while Bama fell to 12-12 and 2-9 in the SEC.
Wilson, a freshman from Power Springs, Ga., stepped up with 19 points including an 8-for-8 night from the free throw line for Arkansas. Wilson hit a pair of bonus shots to send the game into the first overtime and added a big three in the overtime period to keep the game alive.
Bowen also had a career night with 19 points and eight rebounds. The Wichita, Kan., native played 38 minutes after senior Sarah Watkins fouled out in regulation.
Senior Quistelle Williams had her fifth double-double of the season with 12 points and 11 rebounds. The Grand Rapids, Mich., native hit two big three-pointers in the big win.
"I'm worn out," a happy Tom Collen said. "It was about who had the will and could find a way to win. I don't think I've ever been more proud of a team. We have been so close so many times and I think we deserved this. Alabama did a great job but I'm just so happy for our team."
Alabama had the momentum from the opening tip and controlled the first half of the game. Arkansas maintained its composure and scratched back into the game in the second half and took the lead as the game wore on. Up three, 58-55, at the end of regulation, Bama drove the floor and Shafontaye Myers hit a fall away three-pointer with three seconds on the clock to tie the game and send it to the first overtime period.
The game moved into the second overtime frame and Arkansas again had the three-point lead, 68-65 with 18 ticks on the clock. Arkansas let the Crimson Tide run the floor and burn some time and Myers again stepped up with a deep three tying the game and sending it to the second overtime.
Alabama came out on fire in the second bonus frame and the Razorbacks were down seven points fast. With just under two minutes to play, Williams hit a three-pointer to spark Arkansas. The defense answered for the Razorbacks getting a stop and the Tide committed a foul on a missed shot.
Bowen stepped to the line and drained two free throws with 39 seconds on the clock but Arkansas still trailed by two, 73-75.
Collen elected to foul at this point and Alabama hit one of two bonus shots but left 14 seconds on the clock for the Razorbacks. Arkansas drove the floor and the ball found its way to Wilson's hands. The freshman calmly stepped back and drained a three pointer with the clock winding down tying the contest at 76 and forcing the third overtime period.
The Razorbacks carried that momentum over into the final frame going on a 10-2 run to start the overtime as they hung on for the 91-80 triple period win at Alabama.
Five players scored in double figures for Arkansas paced by 19 points from Wilson and Bowen. Senior Erin Gatling added 13 points and Calli Berna and Williams had 12 points each. Williams posted a traditional double-double with 12 points and 11 rebounds while Berna also had a double-double with 12 points and 11 assists in the win.
Arkansas has a bye Thursday before returning to SEC action hosting Missouri Sunday Feb. 17, at 2 p.m.
Gators Beat Auburn on the Road
Four Gators scored in double-figures and another collected 11 rebounds and Florida defeated Auburn, 65-57, on the road for the first time since Feb. 29, 2004.
The Gators (15-9, 4-6 SEC) trailed by nine points early in the game, but regrouped to tie it by halftime and then took control of the second half, outscoring the Tigers (13-11, 2-9 SEC), 39-31 in the final 20 minutes for its second Southeastern Conference road victory of the season.
“It was a tremendous second-half,” UF head coach Amanda Butler said. “We played about 30 minutes of really good basketball. We had a slow start again, but I’m really proud of our team for not letting that set the tone for the whole game. When we finally shook that off and decided how good Auburn was and experienced how we needed to play to beat them, I thought we made great changes in intensity.”
Freshman Christin Mercer (Douglasville, Ga.) led the Gators with 12 points on 6-of-9 shooting, while pulling down nine rebounds and just missing her second consecutive double-double.
Jennifer George (Fresno, Calif.) added 11 points and seven rebounds with two blocks and a pair of steals, while Jaterra Bonds (Gainesville, Fla.) scored all of her 11 points in the second half and all from the free throw line where she connected on 11 of 14 attempts.
Lily Svete (Granger, Ind.) nailed three three-pointers en route to 11 points, with all three of her treys coming in the final 7:16 of the game and each seeming to come after Auburn tied to gain some momentum.
Freshman Sydney Moss (Union, Ky.) collected a career and game-high 11 rebounds, while scoring nine points with a team-best six assists, and helped Florida to the 48-35 rebounding win.
“We had amazing play from different people at different times in the ballgame,” Butler praised. “In the first half, January Miller gave us a great spark and really brought us alive with her two threes. I can’t say enough about the way that Lily (Svete) played today. Her threes in the second half were huge. What’s not as obvious is how Lily played on defense. She played a great defensive game. We had a very, very specific defensive game plan and Lily followed it to a ‘T.’ I’m really, really proud of the way she played.”
Similar to the first half, Mercer scored the first points of the period and Auburn countered with the next four, but this time the Gators didn’t allow the Tigers to march off 11 straight points.
George used her upperbody strength to convert a layup as she was falling down after being fouled and then converted the ensuing free throw that gave UF a 31-30 lead.
Bonds followed with two more points from the charity stripe for the Gators, who then held their largest lead of three points with 17:07 remaining.
The teams traded buckets for the next minute and a half before Blanche Alverson, who finished with 10 points and eight rebounds, knocked down three free throws and tied the game at 35-all.
Bonds connected on two from the line for Florida before Tyrese Tanner, who ended with a game-high 17 points, hit a bucket and the game was tied for the sixth and final time, as Moss hit a bucket and sparked a 10-1 run and the Gator’s lead grew to nine points, 47-38, with 8:07 remaining.
Moss scored two more buckets, both off offensive rebounds, and Kayla Lewis added four more points, including the final two on a fastbreak layup.
Alverson halted UF’s run of eight straight points with a deep three-pointer, but Moss hit one free throw. She missed the second and Lewis corralled the rebound and found Svete open on the wing where she nailed her first three-pointer.
Auburn hit two more free throws, before Svete struck again from deep and Florida led 54-43 with 6:26 remaining.
The teams traded scores over the next two minutes, before Svete canned her third three-pointer that gave Florida a 59-47 lead with 3:37 on the clock. That would be the Gator’s final field goal of the contest, as the team was able to convert 6-of-10 the rest of the way to earn the big road victory.
Florida converted just one of its first nine shot attempts and committed seven turnovers that helped Auburn sprint out to an 11-2 lead during the first eight minutes and 12 seconds of the game.
Christin Mercer scored the game’s first points, before the Tigers ripped off the next 11, with six points coming from Tyrese Tanner. Moss dished the assists on that first field goal, her 75th assist of the season.
January Miller finally halted UF’s cold streak and Auburn’s run with a three-pointer from the right side. Tanner quickly answered with a long jumper for the Tigers, but Mercer stuck again inside and Miller drained another trey that brought the Gators within three points, 13-10, with 9:33 to go in the first half.
The teams traded field goals for the next two minutes, as Florida remained within one point of the Tigers as the Gators hit 6-of-8 following their game-opening tough shooting stretch.
After Svete knocked down two free throws, her first attempts since Dec. 21 against Central Michigan, that brought Florida with one with 5:49 remaining, George hit a tough turnaround in the paint and gave the Gators a 20-19 lead.
Hasina Muhammad struck back 14 seconds later and swung the lead back in Auburn’s favor, as she tacked on two more free throws for a three-point lead with 3:13 to go.
Mercer again dropped another short shot, but Blanche Alverson connected on three free throws after being fouled on a long-range attempt and Auburn’s lead was back at four, 26-22, with 1:46 remaining.
Mercer scored her 10th point of the half on another field goal, before Moss connected on a bucket inside with 46 seconds on the clock that tied the game at 26.
Those were the final points of the period, as Florida found a way to erase an early nine-point deficit and ended the frame with a 36.7 percent (11-30) shooting mark and had just 10 turnovers after committed seven in the first eight-plus minutes of the game.
The Gators return to action on Thursday, Feb. 14, when the team travels to College Station, Texas, and plays No. 14/16 Texas A&M. The start time for the Valentine’s Day contest is scheduled for 9 p.m. ET and will be televised live by CSS (COX Sports/Charter Sports Southeast), which can be seen in Gainesville on Cox channel 259.
Texas A&M Narrowly Beats South Carolina
COLUMBIA, S.C. - Kelsey Bone scored 13 points, including the game-winning basket with 8.7 seconds left, in her return to South Carolina as No. 14 Texas A&M outlasted the 15th-ranked Gamecocks 50-48 on Sunday.
Bone was the Southeastern Conference's newcomer of the year in 2010 when she was a Gamecocks freshman before transferring. She was bottled up most of the second half by South Carolina's defense, but grabbed Adrienne Pratcher's missed 3-pointer and went up strong for the decisive basket.
Ieasia Walker's 3-point try was off the mark as South Carolina's six-game win streak came to an end.
Bone also collected 15 boards for her 11th double-double of the season and her fourth of the SEC season.
Pratcher and Courtney Walker each had 10 points for the Aggies (19-5, 9-1), who were held to their second fewest points this season.
Ieasia Walker led South Carolina (20-4, 8-3) with 16 points.
Kentucky Runs Past Vanderbilt
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – A’dia Mathies has been tremendous all year for Kentucky, but she was even better on Sunday afternoon in the Wildcats’ 75-53 win over Vanderbilt. Mathies dropped a season-best 28 points for UK (21-3, 9-2 Southeastern Conference) in the win, the second straight road victory for the team overall.
Bria Goss added 15 points for Kentucky, while Samarie Walker and Jennifer O’Neill chipped in with 10 apiece. Kentucky shot 43 percent as a team overall, including a hot 45.5-percent mark from 3-point range.
Vandy (15-8, 5-5) was led by Tiffany Clarke’s 20-point effort, while Christina Foggie added 12 for the Commodores before leaving with an injured knee. Vanderbilt has now lost five of its last eight games.
Kentucky will finish the stretch run of the season with five of their seven remaining SEC contests on the road.