Matt Jones has been the online sports editor for the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette since 2010. He is also a feature writer for Hawgs Illustrated magazine and is currently pursuing a Master's degree in documentary film.
Syracuse seniors sink Arkansas
NWA Media/MICHAEL WOODS -- 11/30/2012-- Arkansas guard BJ Young tries to get past past Syracuse defender James Southerland during the first half of Friday night's game at Bud Walton Arena in Fayetteville
FAYETTEVILLE Facing a team with no seniors, Syracuse's fourth-year players showed the value of having them Friday night on the road.
James Southerland scored a career-high 35 points and Brandon Triche added 17 as the No. 6 Orange beat Arkansas 91-82 at Bud Walton Arena in the SEC/Big East Challenge.
Southerland connected on nine 3-point attempts. The 6-foot-8 wingman scored 22 in the first half, helping the Orange build a 15-point lead midway through the period.
Arkansas (3-3) cut the deficit to 43-38 at halftime and to two points early in the second half, but could get no closer. Syracuse used a 14-1 run early in the period to extend the lead to double-digits and the Razorbacks never pulled within five points the rest of the way.
Southerland buried a pair of 3-pointers to extend the Orange lead to 51-42 early in the half and a pair of Triche treys put Syracuse up 11 following a Razorbacks run later in the period.
Southerland's final trey extended the Syracuse lead to 82-70 with 3:29 remaining. He missed much of the second half after picking up his fourth personal foul with 15 minutes to play.
Syracuse (5-0) hit 11 shots from beyond the arc to record its 47th consecutive regular season nonconference win.
Arkansas struggled to hit 3-point shots against the vaunted Orange 2-3 zone, connecting only just 5 of 24 attempts. BJ Young's dribble-drive helped the Razorbacks stay close in the first half when he scored nine straight points, but Syracuse took him mostly out of the game after halftime.
Young scored 19 points in the first half and finished with 25. Marshawn Powell added 19 points and seven rebounds.
Four Syracuse players scored in double-figures. Michael Carter-Williams scored 17 points and C.J. Fair added 12. Carter-Williams, who leads the nation in assists per game, had nine Friday.
The Razorbacks started fast, jumping out to a 10-7 lead, scoring on a pair of highlight-reel dunks by Ky Madden and Young to send an announced crowd of 19,259 into a frenzy.
But the Orange withstood the early onslaught, using a 20-3 run to take the lead for good. With its starters on the bench, Arkansas went 7 minutes, 9 seconds without a made basket during the spurt.
Southerland hit his first five 3-point attempts to give Syracuse a 30-15 lead with 10:44 left before halftime.
He hit 9 of 13 shots from beyond the arc, the most ever by an opponent at Bud Walton Arena and the fourth-most in the history of the venue.