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Arkansas uses quick start to defeat Alabama

Jan 28, 2007 - 12:47 AM TUSCALOOSA, Alabama (Ticker) -- Despite the best efforts of Richard Hendrix, Arkansas had enough to make a huge cushion stand up.

Patrick Beverley scored 19 points and Sonny Weems contributed 16 as Arkansas capitalized on a hot start before holding on for a 63-57 victory over No. 12 Alabama in a Southeastern Conference matchup.

After coasting to an 88-61 over the Crimson Tide three weeks ago, the Razorbacks looked just as good on the road early. They scored the game's first 10 points and held a 31-18 halftime advantage behind 10 points from Weems.

The Razorbacks (14-7, 3-4 SEC West) took their biggest lead at 55-32 with under eight minutes before the Crimson Tide staged a furious rally.

Hendrix, who scored 23 of his 28 points in the second half, continually got inside for easy baskets as the Crimson Tide (15-5, 2-4 West) reeled off a 21-3 run in less than seven minutes to pull within 56-49 with 2:26 remaining.

However, Hendrix also made a costly play down the stretch when he called for an intentional foul after the Crimson Tide had pulled within 58-53.

Stefan Welsh split a pair of free throws and Beverley, who scored 14 points in the second half, made a pair of attempts at the line to rebuild the lead to 61-53 with under a minute left.

It was a similar game but had a different ending for the Crimson Tide, who posted a 78-76 victory over Georgia here one week ago. In that contest, the Crimson Tide fell into a 15-0 hole and trailed by 13 points with under four minutes remaining before they rallied.

"We're in a period right now where we're just struggling," Alabama coach Mike Gottfried said. "Our effort and intensity level was there, we're just not playing well."

Jermareo Davidson added 12 points for the Crimson Tide, who shot 37 percent (22-of-59), including a dismal 1-of-14 showing from the arc. Alabama lost for the fourth time in six games overall.

Weems hit three jumpers in under seven minutes to start the contest as the Razorbacks raced to a 15-2 lead.

Thanks to their poor shooting, the Crimson Tide never were able to reduce the deficit under double digits until the second half. They shot just 26 percent (7-of-27) in the opening 20 minutes.

The Razorbacks also received a big game from Steven Hill, who grabbed 16 rebounds. His effort helped the Razorbacks to a 43-30 cushion on the boards.

Arkansas shot 41.5 percent (22-of-53) and was able to overcome 19 turnovers in winning for just the second time in six games.

    --- --- -----
    ARKANSAS 31 32 63
    ALABAMA (12) 18 39 57 FINAL

    Jan 27 5:04 PM


    Jan 27 3:49 PM
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    RUWTbot Added 54 roots

    Arkansas vs. AlabamaJan 27 3:49 PM