BATON ROUGE, La. -- Ralston Turner had 16 points to pace four scorers in double figures for LSU in a 71-65 victory against Arkansas on Saturday.
Justin Hamilton registered a double-double with 13 points and 11 rebounds for LSU (13-9, 3-5 SEC). Anthony Hickey contributed 12 points and Eddie Ludwig came off the bench to match his career high with 12 points.
Arkansas got field goals from Julysses Nobles and Michael Sanchez to pull within 61-58 with 2:31 remaining in the game. But Hamilton answered with two free throws to put the Tigers ahead by five points.
The big play of the game happened just 15 seconds later on a transition play. Arkansas freshman BJ Young sailed down the lane for a bank shot, but the good basket was wiped away for a charging call. Young, the Hogs' leading scorer on the season with a 14-point average, later fouled out with just 3 points.
"We had some windows of opportunity," Arkansas coach Mike Anderson said, noting that play by Young was clearly one of them.
"There was also a big steal by Devonta Abron that he lost for a turnover. That was a window of opportunity. There were some big plays that were charges. Give LSU credit. I can't fault our effort, just disappointed in some of the execution.
"I look at the box score and see only eight assists and we had 19 turnovers. Julysses had six. You can't win with your guard having that kind of a number. BJ had four turnovers. When you have those kinds of numbers, it's not the right recipe.
"We are still having growing pains with a young team. When we had chances, we shot ourselves in the foot. Still, we are getting closer. I'm encouraged but disappointed with the outcome."
After Nobles made one of two foul shots, Hickey made a short jumper to give LSU a 65-59 lead with 1:01 remaining. Hickey would then make a steal, which resulted in two Andre Stringer free throws to give the Tigers another six-point lead at 67-61 with 35 seconds left.
Mardracus Wade had 15 points as the leading scorer for Arkansas (16-7, 4-4), which has yet to win a game away from home. Nobles had 14 points, while reserve Rashad Madden had 10.
LSU built an 11-point lead in the first half on the strength of a 15-4 run. Seven Tigers players made field goals during that stretch. A 3-pointer by Ludwig, his first in conference play, gave the Tigers a 31-20 lead with 4:23 remaining before halftime.
Arkansas closed the half on a 9-2 run as it reduced its deficit to four points. A three-point play by Rickey Scott started the outburst, while a layup by Young at the buzzer left the Razorbacks behind 35-31.
LSU quickly gained a double-digit lead in the second half as Hickey made two baskets and Hamilton added one in the first 2 minutes. However, Arkansas fought back and pulled within two points at 43-41 on a field goal by Scott with 12:53 remaining in the game.
The Razorbacks cut the Tigers lead to one point at 50-49 on a 3-pointer by Wade with 9:02 left. LSU quickly extended its advantage to six points on baskets by Johnny O'Bryant and Turner, as well as a foul shot by Hamilton.
Arkansas plays at Georgia on Wednesday before playing host to South Carolina at 12:30 p.m. Saturday.
LSU 71, Arkansas 65
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