NORTH LITTLE ROCK - Delvon Johnson had a career night and Jeff Peterson's 3-pointer forced extra time after rallying from 8 points down, but the Razorbacks could not get a win in their only Central Arkansas appearance of the season.
Jamarr Sanders had 12 of his 19 points as three other UAB Blazers scored in double figures as they downed Arkansas, 70-65, in overtime Friday night at Verizon Arena.
"Somehow or another our guys showed some heart and some courage and got the thing into overtime, but in overtime we get a shot close to the basket and miss it - almost a lay-up - miss five free throws and a couple of lay-ups," Arkansas head coach John Pelphrey said. "They made it really difficult for us in overtime. They continued to do a real good job of executing their stuff. Tough game. Tough loss."
Peterson's 3-pointer with 0.5 left in regulation forged a 57-57 tie after Arkansas had rallied from a 55-47 deficit with just under two minutes in the game.
"That was a big shot with time running out," Pelphrey said. "We weren't able to do what we wanted to do in terms of getting Rotnei (Clarke) loose with seven seconds on the clock and he stepped up and made a big one."
But the Razorbacks never led in overtime, missed the five free throw and several shots from point-blank range.
"We left eight or 10 points out there in overtime," Pelphrey said.
The Blazers and head coach Mike Davis got their second straight win in as many years in the state as they also won last season in Fayetteville on a last-second dunk.
UAB (4-1) won a school-record 25 games last season, but lost three starters off that team.
"We did tonight one of the toughest things that you can do on the road and that is lose a big lead, go into overtime on a last-second shot and be able to win the game in overtime," Davis said. "It speaks volumes about our guys.
Pelphrey did see some positives from his team that was out-rebounded badly by Southeast Missouri State on Wednesday, but trailed just 37-36 against the bigger UAB squad on Friday and had just nine turnovers while forcing 16.
"It's tough because we were right there for the win, but I thought we stepped up and really competed on the backboard, held our turnovers to a very small number and just weren't able to convert a few more shots," Pelphrey said.
He especially hated to lose in North Little Rock before the largest crowd to see his team play this season.
"I thought it (the crowd) was awesome," Pelphrey said. "I really loved the noise before the game, scream and yell. it was pretty emotional. It really is. I love our relationship that we have with our fans."
Johnson went 6 of-12 from the field and 6-of-10 from the free throw line in a game where he had 10 points and 9 rebounds by halftime.
He played 42 minutes and sophomore forward Marshawn Powell - who had missed the previous two games with an ankle injury - played 25 minutes, but was just 3-of-11 from the field and had 6 points and 4 rebounds - well under his 15 points agame average from last season.
"They had no answer whatsoever for Delvon," Peterson said. "We guards probably shot too much and didn't get it inside enough. He and Marshawn either scored or got fouled every time."
Julysess Nobles added 10 points, 4 steals and 2 assists for Arkansas.
Arkansas shot just 37.9 percent from the field in the game with sharpshooter Rotnei Clarke just 4-of-11 from the field and just 2-of-9 from 3-point range as his team was going 3 of 21 from beyond the arc.
"They did a good job and I thought they made it very difficult to shake him loose," Pelphrey said. "We have got to do some things better to get him some cleaner opportunities. But we did a good job getting the ball up front and I thought Delvon was outstanding. I thought Marshawn made some good plays. He is obviously not back to 100 percent or where he is going to be, but that is as good as he has been since he got hurt."
England native Ovie Soko added 17 points for UAB while Cameron Moore had 14 and Aaron Johnson 10 points and 8 assists.
Conway native Preston Purifoy was scoreless in seven minutes for the Blazers in the freshman's return to the state,
"We just fought like crazy," Johnson said. "That's all coach told us to do. No matter how many turnovers we have, no matter how many offensive rebounds we give up - just keep fighting. That's our motto. We bring the fight and we fight the whole game."
The Razorbacks return to action Wednesday night when they host Oklahoma.