FAYETTEVILLE, AR (arkansarazorbacks.com) – An explosive third period and three players in double figures were not enough as the University of Arkansas women’s basketball team suffered a 77-63 loss at No. 16 Kentucky in Southeastern Conference action in Lexington, Kentucky, Sunday.
Jessica Jackson paced Arkansas (11-16, 6-8) with 18 points. Freshman Malica Monk added 12 and junior Kelsey Brooks had 10 in the loss to the Wildcats (19-6, 8-6 SEC)
Arkansas played well in the first period but gave up a buzzer-beating 3-pointer to the Wildcats to end the frame. The second period was a tough one for the Razorbacks as Kentucky out-scored Arkansas 22-10.
Arkansas battled through long scoring lapses including an almost four-minute period in which the Razorbacks went 0-7. The Razorbacks hit just one deuce in the final 3:23 of the half and trailed Kentucky 44-26 at the break.
The Razorbacks had a solid third period that saw the offense pick up with a 6-for-7 run while the defense held the Wildcats without a basket for 3:36. The scoring burst erased a 20-point UK lead, and Arkansas pulled within eight points late in the third quarter.
Kelsey Brooks had a pair of big three-pointers during the run while the defense of Jordan Danberry, Monk and Melissa Wolff forced a couple of Wildcat turnovers.
The Razorbacks outscored the Wildcats 20-11 in the third and cut the lead to nine, trailing 55-46, heading into the final 10 minutes of regulation. Jackson had 13 in the first 30 minutes while Monk and Brooks had eight each.
Arkansas couldn’t maintain the momentum in the fourth period as Kentucky hurt the Razorbacks on the boards and made their free throws when the Cardinal had to foul.
Arkansas finished shooting 44.8 percent on 26-for-58 from the floor. Arkansas matched Kentucky with four three-pointers but was out-rebounded 37-24
· Arkansas Starters: Jessica Jackson, Devin Cosper, Jordan Danberry, Melissa Wolff, Alecia Cooley
· Arkansas is 13-20 all-time against Kentucky
o The last Razorback win in Lexington was Feb. 13, 2003
· Kentucky won the tip
· Jessica Jackson had a team-best eight points at the half
o Jackson finished with 18 points for Arkansas
o It is the 23rd time this year and the 74th time in her career she has scored double figures
· Arkansas is 1-14 when trailing at the half
· Arkansas scored 20 points in the third period
o It is the fifth time the Razorbacks have scored 20+ in the third period
o It is the first time since Arkansas scored 22 in the third period against Tennessee Jan. 14.
· The final Women’s basketball luncheon takes place Monday at 11:30 a.m. at Mermaid’s in Fayetteville