Washington Notches Another Double-Double

FAYETTEVILLE — The numbers didn't surprise Arkansas freshman guard Rotnei Clarke. Junior forward Michael Washington led the Razorbacks to an 89-80 win over Austin Peay on Wednesday night with game highs of 24 points and 14 rebounds.

Just another ho-hum evening for the 6-foot-9 McGehee native, Clarke said.

"He's our best player down low, and he's basically automatic," said Clarke, one of four Razorbacks who scored in double figures. "He's either going to score or get fouled. He's really smart and he's such a great competitor."

Washington fouled out with 2 minutes, 27 seconds, remaining after playing 28 minutes.

It was evident early in the contest that the Governors didn't possess a post player capable of guarding Washington. Freshman point guard Courtney Fortson noticed immediately.

"We recognized that the first play of the game," Fortson said. "We just kept going to him."

Washington said he didn't get frustrated by the constant double teams Austin Peay employed on him. He merely got more aggressive in a different way, scoring six first-half points off of three offensive rebounds.

"I just kept playing hard and didn't get down," said Washington, who made 10 of his 15 shots and all four of his free throws.



McDonald Leaving

Arkansas coach John Pelphrey told reporters after Wednesday's game that junior Montrell McDonald had decided to leave the program. McDonald sat out Arkansas' last four contests because of a suspension related to an undisclosed violation of team rules.

Pelphrey said McDonald, who averaged 4.5 points and 5.3 rebounds in the Hogs' first four games, had simply "decided to leave our basketball team." Pelphrey wouldn't go into any more detail about any specifics regarding McDonald's suspension and eventual departure.

"It's unfortunate," Pelphrey said. "But we wish him well parting ways. Again, it's unfortunate. But it is what it is."



Moore Contributes

Freshman forward Brandon Moore played a career-high 25 minutes as freshman forward Michael Sanchez dealt with foul trouble the entire game. Sanchez played only 13 minutes after picking up two early fouls in each half.

Moore only scored two points, grabbed one rebound and swiped three steals, but Pelphrey said he was extremely pleased with the 6-9, 215-pounder's effort.

"Brandon Moore shows up every single day and works hard," Pelphrey said. "He has no idea where the cafeteria is on campus half of the time. But he opens his eyes, opens his ears, comes with a phenomenal attitude and stays late and works hard.

"He certainly still has a lot to learn, but we don't win without him tonight."



Tip-Ins



• Pelphrey said Fortson, who had a triple-double last Wednesday night against North Carolina Central, was "knocking on the door" for another one. Fortson finished with 20 points, seven rebounds and seven assists in 36 minutes.

• Sophomore guard Marcus Britt made his second career start in place of junior Stefan Welsh. Both played 20 minutes with Welsh scoring 12 points and Britt tallying seven.

• Pelphrey picked up his third technical foul of the season early in the first half after being upset about the lack of a foul call on Austin Peay.

• Austin Peay's Drake Reed paced the Governors with 24 points on 10-of-15 shooting.




Jim Thorpe Classic



At Bud Walton Arena

Wednesday's Result

Arkansas 89, Austin Peay 80

Friday's Game

Stephen F. Austin vs. Austin Peay, 7:05 p.m. (free admission)

Saturday's Game

Stephen F. Austin at Arkansas, 7:05 p.m.

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