Kristin Moore, her starting center, had suffered a season-ending knee injury against Cincinnati four days before the start of the SEC season.
"At the beginning of the year we came up with a plan for the season, to hide our obvious weaknesses and magnify our strengths," Gardner said. "The role that Moore played was huge -- her ability to pass, hit the elbow jumper and defend the post.
"We had our philosophy, and now all of a sudden adversity hit. We had to try to re-identify who we are."
Without Moore, the Lady Razorbacks shot poorly in losses to Georgia and Florida.
"I had dumb confidence," said UA forward Sarah Pfeifer, after a 3 of 10 shooting night against Florida. "I kept missing and kept shooting. It felt like we were 0-for-the-century."
Arkansas guard Rochelle Vaughn made 1 of 14 against Florida.
"We didn't appear to lack confidence," Gardner said on Friday. "Obviously, some didn't. They're still shooting."
The Lady'Backs seemed to be diagonally parked in a parallel universe.
All Gardner, a former sharpshooter, knew to do was urge her team to keep doing extra shooting before practice. On Friday, all five goals in Bud Walton Arena were in use.
"You gain confidence by constant repetition," Gardner said. "That's why I think keeping the same routine for free throws is important."
Pfeifer and Vaughn improved on Sunday, scoring 15 and 17 points respectively in Arkansas' 85-73 loss to Ole Miss.
UA junior reserve center Kristina Andjelkovic, a 6-foot-2 transfer from Chipola (Fla.) Junior College, hails from Belgrade, Serbia.
Imagine her surprise when Arkansas trainer Phill Vardiman made cupcakes for her and the other Lady'Backs on Friday, the day celebrated as Christmas in Serbia.
Andjelkovic received applause from her teammates, along with the cupcakes. Brittney Vaughn sneaked an extra, unclaimed cupcake.
ALLEN'S WIFE ILL
Carla Allen, the wife of longtime Alabama baseball sports information director Barry Allen, is scheduled to receive a bone marrow transplant today at Alabama-Birmingham Hospital.
Lady'Backs junior Melissa Hobbs has a new nickname. During a recent practice, Arkansas guard Kristin Peoples was heard to say, "Way to go, Hobbit!"... Entering Sunday's Arkansas-Ole Miss game, 12 of the 13 Lady Rebels were averaging at least 9.9 minutes played. Arkansas was also an equal-opportunity deployer, with 10 Lady'Backs averaging at least 10 minutes per game ... Ole Miss senior wide-body forward Tommie Eddie, thought to be possibly out for the season for academic reasons, returned after missing the Ole Miss-Arkansas men's game to help the Rebels take an early 22-10 lead at home over Mississippi State on Saturday. Eddie scored 17 points, but MSU rallied to win 87-76. "We (had) felt Tommie would be the key at Arkansas, to open up the perimeter," said Rebs coach Rod Barnes on his 39th birthday, Saturday. Arkansas' men beat Ole Miss 69-46 on Wednesday. The Rebels had not allowed more than 70 points in a game before giving up 87 to Mississippi State. The Bulldogs now lead the Rebels 129-101 in their long series... Rebels Todd Abernethy and Bam Doyne worked on their shooting at Tad Smith Coliseum following the UA-Ole Miss women's game Sunday.
UA-OLE MISS NOTEBOOK
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