Daniel Gafford with 25 points against the Hoosiers.
By: Carlos Chicas
Photos: Crant Osborne
Daniel Gafford had a career-high 25 points and tied his career-high with 12 rebounds to lead Arkansas to a 73-72 victory over Indiana Sunday afternoon at Bud Walton Arena.
With the game tied at 72 with 2.5 seconds left in the game, Mason Jones, who scored 11 with seven assists and no turnovers, made a free throw to give the Razorbacks a one-point lead. After an Indiana timeout, Jones missed the second free throw on purpose and Indiana’s last-second, full-court heave missed to give the Razorbacks the win.
Arkansas led by three, 72-69, after a Gafford free throw with 1:41 left in the game. Indiana committed a turnover on the ensuing possession and Jones was fouled. The sophomore missed the front end of a 1-and-1. Hoosier guard Rob Phinisee got the rebound and drained a 3-pointer on the other end to tie the game at 72 with 48 seconds left. Arkansas missed a jumper with 21 seconds left and Indiana grabbed the rebound. The Hoosiers got two cracks to win the game before Jones came down with a defensive rebound, was fouled and secured the win with his free throw.
In the first half, the teams were deadlocked most of the period with five points being the largest lead held by either team. With the game tied at 35 with 28 seconds left, sophomore Gabe Osabuohien made his first collegiate 3-pointer to give the Razorbacks and a 38-35 lead at the break.
Arkansas is now 126-7 in the Mike Anderson era when leading at the half.
the second half, Gafford blocked a shot on Indiana’s first possession and capped a 7-0 run to start the second half with a dunk to give the Razorbacks a 10-point lead (45-35) and force an early Hoosier timeout.
Indiana went on a run of its own and took a one-point lead (54-53) with 10:50 left. However, Gafford answered with a jumper. The Hoosiers took another one-point lead (58-57) with 8:50 remaining only to see Gafford once again answer to give his squad the lead. Indiana grabbed another one-point lead (66-65) with 4:55 to go in the game but Gafford was up to the challenge by making a lay-up. Gafford then got a steal, which resulted in a Jones lay-up for a 69-66 Razorback advantage.
The Hoosiers tied the game (69-69) with a 3-pointer with 2:16 remaining. Arkansas worked the clock and Jalen Harris found Adrio Bailey for a lay-up with three seconds on the shot clock for a two-point advantage. Gafford expanded the lead to three with his free throw with 1:41 left to set up the exciting finish.
Arkansas will stay home to host Montana State on Wednesday (Nov. 21) in the Razorbacks’ third game of the Hardwood Showcase. Tip-off is set for 7 pm at Bud Walton Arena.