NASHVILLE – The Arkansas women’s basketball team (18-8, 5-6 SEC) ran into trouble at Vanderbilt (11-14, 2-9 SEC), falling to the Commodores 78-70 on Thursday night. In a game where Vanderbilt led for nearly 37 minutes, Arkansas took the lead briefly in the third quarter, but could not close in on the Commodores. Makayla Daniels led the Razorbacks with a season-high 31 points.
Vanderbilt won the tip, but the Razorbacks held the Commodores to a shot clock violation on their first possession and Erynn Barnum responded on the other end with a third-chance layup. The Commodores made two triples, but Makayla Daniels banked in 3-pointer and made two free throws to help Arkansas go back up briefly until Vanderbilt cruised on a 7-0 run. Daniels broke the Razorbacks’ scoring drought with a layup, but Vanderbilt kept on firing away on offense and led 15-9 with 4:41 left in the first quarter. Arkansas was held from the field for the remaining 5:32 of the quarter but made four of eight free throws during that stretch. The Commodores were held scoreless for the last 4:06 of the frame, making it an 18-13 game in favor of Vanderbilt.
Arkansas opened the quarter with two layups to start a 4-0 run, and after Vanderbilt’s ninth foul of the game, the Commodores burned an early timeout with 8:36 left in the frame. Vanderbilt then made back-to-back 3-pointers to go up by seven, but Chrissy Carr answered with a 3-pointer of her own. The Commodores went back up by seven, but Daniels logged a 3-pointer, and the Razorbacks trailed 28-24 with four minutes and some change left in the first half. Off a steal, Daniels went to the basket for a layup, but Vanderbilt answered with a 3-pointer off a second chance opportunity. The Razorbacks then got Barnum going with two straight layups in the paint, as Arkansas trailed 33-30 with 1:47 remaining in the half. Vanderbilt closed the quarter on a 4-2 run, as Arkansas was down 37-32 at the half.
The Razorbacks came up empty on their first two possessions of the second half, committing back-to-back turnovers. Carr got Arkansas its first basket of the quarter with a second-chance layup. Whenever Arkansas was starting to find a groove offensively, Vanderbilt would answer, and after a Daniels 3-pointer to cut the lead to three, the Commodores went back up by five with a layup. Carr delivered a triple and after a Daniels 3-pointer, Arkansas took its first lead since the early part of the game., 47-46, with less than four minutes in the quarter. Vanderbilt got fouled on their next basket and converted the 3-point play to retake the lead, 49-47 with three minutes left in the frame. The Commodores ended the quarter on an 8-2 run and the Razorbacks trailed 55-49 heading into the final quarter.
Barnum helped the Razorbacks get their first points of the quarter from the free throw line after two minutes ticked off the clock in the quarter. With Arkansas unable to make magic happen from the field, the Razorbacks trailed 59-51 with 6:11 left in the game. Carr dug Arkansas out of that drought with a 3-pointer, but the Razorbacks still fell behind, 61-54 with 5:25 left. Vanderbilt scored out of Arkansas’ timeout, but Daniels answered with a 3-point play. The Commodores tallied a 3-point play of their own, but Daniels logged another and-1, as the Razorbacks were down 66-62 with 3:55 remaining. Arkansas forced two Vanderbilt turnovers, which set up for a Barnum second-chance layup to cut the Vanderbilt lead to two. Vanderbilt scored a jumper on their next possession, as Arkansas trailed 68-64 with 1:52 remaining in the game. The Commodores scored another basket with under a minute remaining, as Arkansas was down 70-66 with 38.9 seconds left.Vanderbilt made their free throws down the stretch to win the game 78-70.
- Daniels scored a season-high 31 points off 11-of-23 shooting and four 3-pointers. The game marked her third 30-point game of her career, while also surpassing Amber Ramirez, India Lewis and Malica Monk on the all-time scoring list to climb up to No. 17 (1,328). She also added three boards and three steals
- Carr came up with big baskets and finished the night with 18 points, three triples, five rebounds and a steal
- Barnum still found a way to reach double digits, ending the night with 12 points and seven rebounds
- Emrie Ellis played 14 minutes, pulling down a season-high five rebounds
- Rylee Langerman came up with hustle plays, as always and finished with four rebounds
The Razorbacks will host Missouri on Sunday, Feb. 12 at 2 p.m. for Arkansas’ second game against the Tigers this season. The game will serve as the team’s Pink Out Game and will be broadcast on SEC Network+.
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