KANSAS CITY – Arkansas made several key plays inside the final 1:40 to secure a 73-67 victory over Cincinnati to win the 2021 Hall of Fame Classic Tuesday evening at the T-Mobile Center. The #12/13 Razorbacks improve to 5-0 on the season while the Bearcats drop to 5-1.
Down one, JD Notae made a steal at the 1:39 mark that led to a pair of Au’Diese Toney free throws for a 68-67 lead, one the Razorbacks would not relinquish. Down the stretch, Jaylin Williams had two defensive rebounds, two offensive rebounds, drew a charge and capped the win with a free throw. Other big plays came from Davonte Davis (offensive rebound), Toney (offensive rebound) and, for the second straight game, Chris Lykes made four free throws in the final seconds to ice the game.
Toney led the Hogs with 19 points and accounted for nine of Arkansas’ 46 rebounds. Williams led the way with a career-high 11 boards, helping the Razorbacks out-rebound the Bearcats by 14.
Toney was named the Classic MVP and Lykes, who scored 15, joined him on the All-Tournament team. Notae finished with 13. In addition to Toney’s scoring and rebounding prowess, he held Cincinnati’s top offensive player, Jeremiah Davenport, to zero points on 0-of-4 shooting.
Cincinnati’s David Dejulius led all scorers with 24 points, including 17 in the second half.
Arkansas returns home to host Penn on Sunday (Nov. 28). Tip-off is set for 3:00 pm and the game will be televised on the SEC Network.
FIRST HALF: Arkansas 26 – Cincinnati: 30
- Arkansas scored first but neither team could get things going early as Aransas led 4-2 at the first media timeout.
- The game was tied 16-16 at the 8-minute media timeout (7:59) as Arkansas was shooting just 26.1 percent and Cincy just 31.6.
- Arkansas was 0-of-10 from 3-point range in the first half and shot just 29.4 percent.
- Nine Razorbacks played in the first half and eight scored.
- Arkansas won the battle of the boards in the period, 26-20.
SECOND HALF: Arkansas 47 – Cincinnati: 37
- The second half featured seven ties and 11 lead changes.
- Arkansas used an 8-0 run (Notae 3-pointer, Connor Vanover dunk and three free throws by Notae) to take its first lead of the second half, 51-45 with 11:05 left. Arkansas led 61-60 with 5:23 left thanks to a Lykes 3-pointers and a Toney fastbreak layup.
- Neither team scored again until Davonte Davis sank two free throws with 3:53 remaining for a 3-point Razorback lead (63-60). Cincinnati battled back to lead 65-64 (3:08) and 67-66 (2:31).
- From that point, Notae’s steal set-up the thrilling finish.
- Both teams made 13 field goals and Cincinnati shot 48.1 percent from the field while Arkansas shot 40.6 percent.
- Arkansas won several key statistical categories to get the win.
- First, Arkansas was 18-of-23 at the free throw line in the second half, compared to UC’s 7-9.
- Arkansas out-rebounded Cincy 20-12, including 10 offensive boards. Arkansas forced eight second-half turnovers while committing just four.
- Arkansas’ starting lineup was Davonte Davis – JD Notae – Au’Diese Toney – Jaylin Williams – Connor Vanover for the fourth straight game.
- Arkansas won the tip for the fifth straight game.
- JD Notae scored the game’s first points, a layup off a Jaylin Williams assist at 19:32.
- Chris Lykes and Stanley Umude were the first Razorback subs.
- Arkansas wins its first in-season tournament since claiming the 2006 Old Spice Classic in Orlando (Nov. 23-26) with wins over Southern Illinois, Marist and West Virginia. Arkansas improves to 2-3 all-time versus Cincinnati and 8-6 in games played in Kansas City.
- Arkansas missed its first 10 3-pointers before JD Noate sank on at the 17:56 mark of the second half.
- The Razorbacks were 3-of-7 from deep in the second half. With that, Arkansas extended its consecutive games with at least one 3-pointer made to 1,080.
- The streak is the third-best active streak in the NCAA behind UNLV and Duke. Jaylin Williams drew four charges in the game and leads the team with nine this season (adding three in the Gardner-Webb game).
- He led the team with 16 charges drawn last season.
- Jaylin Williams Had his fifth career double-digit rebound effort with his career-high 11.
- Jaylin Williams also led the team with four assists while he and Notae each had two steals to lead the team.
- Au’Diese Toney added nine rebounds to go along with his 19 points. He had six boards on the offensive end.