Beverley Drains 3-Pointers With Ease

AUBURN, Ala. — Arkansas guard Patrick Beverley felt relaxed Thursday night, as if the pressure of playing on the road didn't exist.

He didn't feel a need to force any shots or try to make something out of nothing. Instead, he was fine with just standing off to the side and letting his teammates find him for open shots.

The laid-back approach paid off for the sophomore, who looked cool and calm while draining 3-pointers during Arkansas' 76-70 win over Auburn in Beard-Eaves Memorial Coliseum.

Beverley scored 12 points in the first half, took a backseat role in the second half and finished with 17 points and a team-high eight rebounds.

"Our guards understand we have great (big men) and great depth, so as a team, we understand (opposing teams) are going to double-team," Beverley said. "So my team was just doing an excellent job, and I was getting into the right position to kick it out for open shots. And I did what I had to do to knock them down."

Beverley didn't try to force any shots, and he made most of what he attempted against a depleted Auburn team.

The sophomore sank 4-of-5 3-point attempts in the first half to help the Razorbacks make up for their poor defense early on. He finished 5-of-6 from behind the 3-point arc and 6-of-8 from the floor.

"Every time Patrick shot the ball, I held my hands up for a 3-pointer," Arkansas forward Charles Thomas said. "I'm real confident in his shooting ability."

Surprisingly, Arkansas went away from Beverley's hot hand for much of the second half.

The guard didn't attempt his first shot of the second half until he drained a 3-pointer that gave the Razorbacks a 57-53 lead with 8:20 remaining.

But by that point, Arkansas forward Sonny Weems had gotten into an offensive rhythm. Beverley said he had no problem attempting only two shots after halftime.

"We're a basketball team. Not one guy can win a basketball game for us," Beverley said. "Sonny was hot, so we had to ride him out."

Better Than Average

Auburn guard Rasheem Barrett seemed to be everywhere on the court. He attacked the basket, hit mid-range jumpers and drained a few 3-pointers.

Heading into Thursday, the junior was averaging 14.0 points per game, but he nearly reached that mark during a five-minute stretch early in the first half.

Barrett scored 10 of Auburn's first 18 points, and the Razorbacks didn't have many answers for slowing him down throughout the night.

Barrett finished with a game-high 21 points on 8-of-18 shooting, but he was just 2-of-10 on 3-point attempts.

"Obviously, our big men aren't used to guarding people like that," Thomas said of Barrett.

Bad Foul

Thomas picked a bad time to commit his second foul of the first half.

With the Razorbacks clinging to a 37-35 lead, Auburn guard DeWayne Reed stepped in front of a pass by Arkansas' Gary Ervin and raced downcourt in the final seconds before halftime.

As Reed went up for a layup, Thomas tried altering the shot. But he was called for an intentional foul, sending Reed to the foul line for two free throws with no time remaining in the first half.

Reed made his first attempt, cutting Arkansas' lead to 37-36 at halftime.

Defense Anyone?

Arkansas and Auburn had their share of defensive breakdowns in the first half, resulting in both teams getting plenty of open shots and easy baskets.

At one point midway through the first half, the Tigers were shooting 62.5 percent from the floor (10-of-16). The Razorbacks weren't that far off, making 9-of-15 shots for 60 percent.

But both teams picked up their defense over the final minutes of the first half. Arkansas went into halftime shooting 53.6 percent (15-of-28) compared to Auburn's 46.4 percent (13-of-28).

However, the Razorbacks were just 7-of-17 from the free-throw line during the night. And the Tigers had their own struggles from 3-point range, making just 9-of-35 attempts.

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