Basketball Hogs Hold On For Win In Cancun

True freshman Michael Sanchez's basket broke a tie with 26 seconds left and Michael Washington then hauled in a defensive rebound near the buzzer as the University of Arkansas held off the Quintana Roo Pioneers 60-57 in exhibition basketball Saturday night in Cancun.

Charles Thomas led the Razorbacks with 15 points and 13 rebounds, while Darian Townes and freshman Levan Patsatsia added 13 and 11 points, respectively.

"Quintana Roo played very well and anytime you play against a veteran team that can pass and shoot, it creates problems," Razorbacks coach John Pelphrey said. "I thought our defense was good, but the point total was low because offensively we really struggled. We've got to be better collectively working as a unit.

Arkansas played without injured players Sonny Weems and Stefan Welsh and also without Patrick Beverley and Marcus Britt, who did not dress for violation of team rules.

That left the Razorbacks playing with just nine players, including true freshmen Sanchez, Patsatsia and Luke Rakestraw, who started at small forward.

Patsatsia and Sanchez scored the team's final six points with the former hitting a big 3-pointer late. Sanchez scored after chasing down a loose ball with the score 57-57 and then Patsatsia netting a free throw with one second left.

"I thought the freshmen -- Patsa, Sanchez and Rakestraw played well," Pelphrey said. "I thought their effort and toughness were tremendous. They made their share of mistakes, but without them we don't win."

The Razorbacks won despite shooting just 24 of 62 from the field, 3-of-20 from the free throw and just 9-of-26 from the free throw line.

The Razorbacks, playing their first of two exhibition games in Mexico this weekend, trailed 7-0 right off the bat at Cancun's Case de le Culture gymnasium.

But with Townes scoring seven points, Arkansas rallied to tie the game 14-14 by the end of the first quarter.

Quintana led 34-33 at half before Arkansas managed to take a 48-47 advantage into the final quarter of the game played under international rules.

Arkansas will play again today at 6 p.m. against Belieze before flying home on Monday. In the opening game of the doubleheader at Casa de le Culture, Baylor downed Belieze 115-47.

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