Arkansas 99, Delaware State 71

Michael Qualls tosses in a season-high 20 points while Bobby Portis, Jacorey Williams and Anthlon Bell all added 14 as Arkansas downs Delaware State 99-71 Friday night before 8,040 fans at Bud Walton Arena.

Arkansas' Friday game with Delaware State was sandwiched in between a rout Wednesday of Wake Forest and a Tuesday match-up in Dallas with current No. 22 SMU.

So there was certainly the chance of the Razorbacks getting stuck in the Hornets' nest if they failed to show up with the right amount of intensity.

But Arkansas flipped a switch in time - using big runs in both halves - to race past the visitors 99-71 Friday night before 8,040 fans at Bud Walton Arena.

Michael Qualls had 20 points - one off of his career-high to lead the way for the Razorbacks (3-0) while Bobby Portis, Jacorey Williams and Anthlon Bell are poured in 14 points in the win.

"The first half we have to give Delaware State credit," Arkansas head coach Mike Anderson said. "They came in with a game plan - they were going to slow the tempo down and they were going to spread the floor. And I thought it worked.

"But the one thing it didn't do was frustrate our guys," Anderson added. "I thought our guys really picked up the intensity on defense and we saw the game really just kind of change with one of those patented runs."



Rashad Madden had 9 points and a career-high 8 assists as the Razorback moved to 3-0 on the season.

"I thought Ky (Madden) did a good job of taking command of the team with assists and just kind of calming people down on the floor," Anderson said.

Arkansas had 26 assists while making 35 made field goals.

Williams' 14 points were a career-high while Manuale Watkins added 6 points, Anton Beard 5 points, 7 rebounds and 4 assists and Moses Kingsley 6 points and 4 rebounds as the bench poured in 34 points.

"We had some guys come off the bench that continue to give us some positive minutes," Anderson said. "Manuale Watkins, Jacorey Williams, Beard - who was like a rebounding machine tonight."

Qualls was 7-11 from the field, 2-of-3 from 3-point range and 4-of-4 on his free throws before exiting with over four minutes left.

He noted that Anderson got his point across very clearly to the Razorbacks, when they were trailing 26-25 with 6:48 left in the first half.

Arkansas responded with a 12-0 run to zoom ahead 37-26 with 3:21 remaining before intermission.

"Coach kept harping at us about our sense of urgency for the first five starters," Qualls said. "He felt we needed to come out and play harder. We have been real lackadaisical and that second group has been supplying so much energy for us these past two games and we just wanted to match the second group's intensity."

Arkansas had three straight steals in the backcourt in that time.

"You feel great and want to celebrate but Coach gets on us about that because he wants another steal," Quall said. "Back to back to back is how it is supposed to be. The better defense we play the better offense we have."

Tyshawn Bell had 19 points, DeAndre Hayward 15 and Kendall Gray 10 for the Hornets (2-2), who had 24 turnovers for head coach Keith Walker."

"Arkansas is loaded," Walker said. "They've got shooters, they've got inside people, they've got forwards, they've got good athletes. And they're very disciplined as far as doing what they on the floor. They impose their will and their system on you.

" If you're going to play against them, you're going to need to have five guys on the floor that are very disciplined in order to withstand that pressure for 40 minutes," Walker said. "We were able to do it for 30, you know, but that happened."

Arkansas scored 33 points off those turnovers - same number as the Razorbacks scored off Wake Forest.

"I know in the first half they caused us to turn it over 15 times," Walker said. "I didn't need to see the stat sheet in the second half. I know they just imposed their will on us and it was decisive in their favor.""

Walker said he knew what his team was getting into while watching Arkansas hammer Wake Forest 83-53 on Wednesday night.

"I was very impressed with how they played against Wake Forest," Walker said. "You take a team like Arkansas and beat an ACC level team by 30, as a coach you have to be impressed. It doesn't matter what level that ACC team is, it's just very impressive.""

Delaware State, which trailed 44-30 at halftime, rallied to within 57-48 with 12:23 left in the game before Arkansas flipped the switch again and went on another big run."

"They were you down," Walker said. "You have to have some mentally strong guys. We started fumbling that ball and turning it over again and they just stretched that lead out again."

That lead would grow to 31 - 99-68 when Bell launched a trio of three-pointers late on a night when he was 4-of-6 from beyond the arc - and Kingsley hit two free throws with 13 seconds left.

Arkansas was 35-of-72 (48.6 percent) from the field, 10-of-19 from 3-point range and 19-of-27 from the free throw line while out-rebounding its foe 45-33.

Delaware State was 25-of-59 from the field (42.4 percent), 9-of-22 from 3-point range and 12-of-15 on its free throws.

Arkansas will play at SMU Tuesday night at 6:30 with the game televised by ESPNEWS.

"I can't wait to go there," Portis said. " It's a road test to see what our team is made of."


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