Arkansas Razorbacks news from the staff of the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette.
Streak is over
Hogs win first game at Rupp Arena in 20 years
Arkansas' Anthlon Bell (5) and Kentucky's Aaron Harrison (2) chase a loose ball during overtime of an NCAA college basketball game, Thursday, Feb. 27, 2014, in Lexington, Ky. Arkansas won 71-67. (AP Photo/James Crisp)
LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) — Coty Clarke scored seven points in overtime and Arkansas upset No. 17 Kentucky 71-67 on Thursday night to complete a season sweep.
Six weeks after Michael Qualls beat the Wildcats with a last-second dunk in OT, Clarke lifted the Razorbacks this time with a 3-pointer and four free throws in the extra period, including two with 36.7 seconds left for a 69-64 lead.
Free throws were the difference in the game, with Arkansas making all six attempts in overtime and going 16 for 16 overall. Kentucky was 12 of 22 from the line.
James Young's 3-pointer brought Kentucky (21-7, 11-4 Southeastern Conference) within two, but Arkansas' Kikko Haydar made two more from the line with 17 seconds left for the final margin.
Aaron Harrison and Andrew Harrison each missed a 3 at the end for the Wildcats.
The surging Razorbacks (19-9, 8-7) have won four straight and six of seven.
Clarke finished with 11 points, one of four Razorbacks in double figures. Qualls scored 14 to lead the way, with Rashad Madden adding 12 and Anthlon Bell 10.
Willie Cauley-Stein led Kentucky with 16 points and 13 rebounds. Andrew Harrison and Julius Randle each scored 14 and Young 11 on a night when the Wildcats shot just 26 of 76 (34 percent) from the field.
Arkansas shot only 41 percent, but that was good enough to beat Kentucky for the third straight time and provide its first win at Rupp Arena since its 1993-94 NCAA championship season.
It also gave the Razorbacks bragging rights in a matchup of the SEC's top two offenses. But they had to do it at the foul line with baskets hard to come by for both teams in a scrappy second half.
Trailing 50-43 with 12:03 remaining and struggling for offensive consistency, the Wildcats battled back with tough defense to outscore the Razorbacks 11-2 over 6:14. Cauley-Stein's dunk at the 5:31 mark provided Kentucky's first lead since the early minutes.
But the Wildcats missed three of four free throws late in regulation, allowing Arkansas to come back and force overtime.
Arkansas had a chance to win at the end of regulation after Clarke blocked Andrew Harrison's jumper, but Alandis Harris' long 3-pointer bounced off the rim.
Clarke took over from there in overtime.