Dewayne Reed had 16 points, Korvotney Barber had 15 points and 18 rebounds, Ty Waller 14 points and Lucas Hargow 10 as Auburn downed Arkansas 73-51 Saturday afternoon before an announced crowd of 18,246 fans at Bud Walton Arena. "They were better than us today," Arkansas head coach John Pelphrey said. "You have got to give Auburn all the credit. From our side of it, I thought our young men competed, but we just couldn't score what we needed to score...I thought our guys battled, but we couldn't make free throws or close in shots and it goes without saying that we struggled from the 3-point line depsite some very good looks."
The loss left Arkansas (12-5, 0-4) - who did not score the last 6 1/2 minutes of the game - with a four -game losing streak to begin conference play after a 12-1 conference start that included wins over top 10 teams in Oklahoma and Texas.
Stefan Welsh had 14 points,Courtney Fortson 12 points and 9 rebounds, Michael Washington 8 points and 12 rebounds and Michael Sanchez 8 points.
"That is a discouraged bunch of young men back there right now," Pelphrey said.
Pelphrey is still trying to remain positive after a game that featured former Arkansas running back and current Oakland Raider Darren McFadden in the crowd.
"Our guys are certainly very, very disappointed, but I believe in this team," Pelphrey said. "I love the way they work, I appreciate their attitude and their willingness to be a team and I have seen them overachive at the highest level. I would expect nothing but on Monday for those guys to come back out even more determined to play better."
It is the first time that Arkansas has ever started 0-4 in SEC play.
"It is not something we like having attached to our name," Pelphrey said. "There is nothing I can say to change it. It is what it is. We are going to continue to work and try to get better - get riled up and fired up for this next game and at the end of the season we look back it and talk about all the history we made."
The Razorbacks, who were down 59-51 when they quit scoring, shot just 30 percent from the field (19-of-63) and just 50 percent (8 of 16) from the free throw line.
Rotnei Clark had 5 points after two scoreless games, going 2-of-8 from the field and 1-of-5 from 3-point range on a day when the home team was just 5-of-24 from beyond the arc.
The Razorbacks are just 13 of 75 from 3-point range during the losing skid.
"I am sure it is frustrating," Pelphrey said. "But there is nobody coming through that door to help us. Joe Johnson is not coming off that wall, Sidney Moncrief is not coming off that wall. The guys we've got in that room have got to get it down."
Washington, averaging a double-double was just 3-of-10 from the floor.
"Everytime he touched it, he got double-teamed," Pelphrey said. "I thought he did a good job tonight of using his dribble to escape the double team."
Auburn (12-7, 2-4), who hit 10 of 24 3-pointers, won two of three in a tough stretch where it hosted arch-rival Alabama and then went to Kentucky and Arkansas.
"Texas and Oklahoma didn't get a win here and I have been in the league 10 years," Auburn head coach Jeff Lebo said. "I don't think the team realizes how hard it is to win here in Fayetteville."
The Razorbacks, who had zero fast break points, trailed 50-40 on Hargove's bucket inside with 13:49 left before making a push.
They got within 52-47 when Welsh buried a 3-pointer and 54-49 when Sanchez scored inside with 9:32 remaining.
"We just couldn't get it done after that," Pelphrey said.
The Tigers zoomed back ahead 67-51 when Reed converted an old-fashion 3-point play with 4:15 left in the game.
"At the eight-minute mark we knew Arkansas had a young backcourt that is experienced and we imposed our experience, which helped," Lebo said. The Razorbacks scored only four points in the last 11 1/2 minutes of the game. Arkansas played without key reserve Marcus Monk, who was withheld from competition pending a review of an issue that could affect his eligibility.
A UA press release said that Monk can continue to practice during this time, that Univerity officials are hopeful to bring resolution to this matter as quickly as possible and would have no other comment.
"I think we had enough to compete in the basketball game," said Pelphrey, who found out late Friday night that Monk would not be able to play. "Do I like having Brandon and Marcus a part of our team? There is no question about that."
The Razorbacks also were without the suspended Brandon Moore and got just a little action out of Jason Henry, whose knee injury flared up again.
"His knee is bothering him," Pelphrey said. "I appreciated him being honest with me at halftime. He said 'Coach, I can play, but I might not be able to go as fast as you want me to go.' I said "well, you might have to play anyway." Auburn hit 7 of its first 8 3-point attempts - the last one a Hargove bomb - in building a 26-17 lead with 9:14 left in the first half.
The Tigers would grab their largest lead of the first half at 33-21 with just over 6 minutes remaining.
The Razorbacks did cut it to 38-31 by halftime, scoring the last points of the half on two Fortson free throws with 47.3 remaining.
Auburn missed five shots in the final 10 seconds before halftime, but did score the first two baskets after recess to go up 42-31.
"I thought defensively we were very good," Lebo said. "Our start was important."
Arkansas will return to action Thursday night at 8 p.m. when it hosts Alabama.
"I don't have any question that we can play in this league and compete in this league, but we are not playing well enough to do that right now," Pelphrey said. "It hasn't changed since day one. We have got to have an unbelievable attitude, encourage our teammates and bring out the best. We have got to play hard."