Hardwood Hogs close out exhibition play with win

Hardwood Hogs close out exhibition play with win


– In a game that featured a combined 58 fouls and 71 free throws, the Arkansas men's basketball team closed out its exhibition season with an 89-66 win over Pittsburg State behind 22 points from sophomore Bobby Portis at Bud Walton Arena.

Portis, who was named to the preseason All-SEC first team in the morning by the league head coaches, scored his game-high 22 points on 6-of-8 from the field and 10-of-14 from the free throw line, reaching double digits in each half. His 22 points came in just 20 minutes on the floor as he ended the two-game exhibition slate with 33 points over an even 40 minutes.

Just as it did in its first exhibition game, Arkansas received a good performance from its bench to finish with a 37-19 edge in points off the pine. Junior Jacorey Williams and sophomore Moses Kingsley led the way with 13 points each, combining to go 10-of-13 from the field. The Razorback bench scored 108 points over the two exhibition games. 

Kingsley and Williams were major factors in Arkansas' 11-0 run in the second half that doubled the home teams lead from 10 to 21, 71-50, with 9:55 left. The duo combined for nine points during the run, highlighted by six straight from Kingsley that included a two-handed dunk in transition off a pass from Williams. 

Arkansas' lead never dipped below 17 over the final 10 minutes, growing to as large as 25 after a pair of free throws by Kingsley with just under two minutes to go. 

Junior Michael Qualls was the final Razorback in double figures with 13 points and five rebounds. Qualls along with Portis and sophomore Manuale Watkins tied for the team lead with five rebounds while top assist honors went to junior Jabril Durham with four helpers despite a foul-plagued 12 minutes. 

Arkansas shot a solid 49 percent (30-61) from the field, holding a 38-18 advantage in points in the paint and 17-4 edge in second chance points. The Gorillas committed 25 turnovers compared to just 18 made field goals (18-47), but did shoot 24-of-29 from the free throw line. 

With exhibition play in the books, Arkansas will turn its attention to Alabama State for its regular season opener on Sunday. Tip at Bud Walton Arena is slated for 4 p.m. while the game can be seen live on SEC Network+.