McCurdy Shines Before Lights Go Out

FAYETTEVILLE — At times during his freshman year, Sean McCurdy looked lost.

He'd catch himself "just running around" confused, Arkansas coach Stan Heath said.

But in the second half of the Razorbacks' 82-49 victory Monday night over Xavier-New Orleans, McCurdy appeared confident and comfortable.

The sophomore guard was one of the players Heath singled out Tuesday after analyzing the game tape from the Hogs' exhibition opener.

"I was very impressed. He looked under control," Heath said. "He made great plays, both passing and scoring."

McCurdy performed admirably in the first half, making his only shot and recording two steals. But he really excelled in the second half.

He had four assists, creating opportunities for his teammates by driving past his defender and passing. Plus, he scored nine points. McCurdy drained Arkansas' only 3-pointer of the evening, swished a 14-foot jumper and converted on two physical drives to the basket.

He left the game late in the second half after getting hit in the head, suffering an injury team trainer Dave England called "something less than a concussion." But he sat out for the rest of the game, woozy from the collision.

Junior center Steven Hill said the entire team took notice of McCurdy's aggressive play.

"That's something we need badly," Hill said. "If he can be tough like that and help get everyone involved, that's big, especially for a sophomore like him."

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