Long-range woes doom UALR

Published 4 December 2017

Wes Flanigan says his team is suffering from an identity crisis.

Hitting only 4 of 30 three-point attempts Saturday afternoon, the University of Arkansas at Little Rock dropped a 74-66 double-overtime decision to Oral Roberts at the Jack Stephens Center.

"We talked about not settling for threes, but that's exactly what we did," Flanigan said. "They gave us the three-point shot and we didn't make enough of them to make them come out of that zone. Four for 30 is not good enough."

Javan White, a 6-10 sophomore, scored 18 points and pulled down 20 rebounds -- career bests in both -- as the Golden Eagles (2-7) snapped a seven-game losing skid while ending UALR's two-game winning streak.

The Trojans (2-6) were good on only 28 of 77 shots from the floor, including a 1 for 8 effort in the second overtime in which the Eagles outscored the Trojans 10-2.

Shooting was not the only trouble area for the Trojans on Saturday afternoon. Oral Roberts enjoyed a 53-42 advantage on the boards and hit 10 more free throws than the host team.

Sophomore Andre Jones led the Trojans with 25 points on 11-of-21 shooting. He also grabbed a team-high nine rebounds. Junior guard Anthony Black added 14 points and made a game-high four steals.

Oral Roberts was guilty of 24 turnovers, but the tag team post combination of White and senior Albert Owens (19 points, 3 blocks, 5 rebounds) made up for the Golden Eagles' miscues.

White had a steal, a basket and collared five of his 16 defensive rebounds in the second overtime.

"I thought it was a decent effort on our part," Flanigan said. "And I thought [Oral Roberts] won the game in the paint. We knew this was the best front line we were going to face up until this point in the season."

The Trojans rallied from a 49-43 deficit in the final 5:12 of regulation to force overtime.

A nifty bullet pass from Damir Hadzic to Jones led to a layup with 2:40 remaining, and Oliver Black added a free throw at the 2:04 mark to give the Trojans a 54-52 advantage.

Oral Roberts tied it with 1:14 left on a seven-footer from White.

Each team had two possessions to end it, but both missed a three-pointer and committed a turnover.

There were four lead changes in the first overtime. Leading 64-63 with 6.8 seconds left, White had a chance to give the Golden Eagles a three-point cushion but missed two free-throw attempts.

Hadzic was fouled on the rebound after White's second attempt, sending the 6-8 freshman to the line with 5.8 seconds remaining. Hadzic made the first attempt but missed the second. Oral Roberts guard R.J. Fuqua's 35-footer at the buzzer bounced off the side of the rim.

Oral Roberts dominated the final five minutes. Owens connected on a hook shot at the 3:38 mark and the Golden Eagles never trailed again.

The Golden Eagles led for more than 34 minutes, but there were 12 lead changes.

"Obviously [Jones] played a heckuva a game, especially on the baseline," Flanigan said. "But we've got to be able to execute a little better in these close games. And again, I just thought it came down to us forcing too many of those three-point shots. We've got to start understanding who we are."

Today’s state games

MEN

DIVISION II

Arkansas-Fort Smith at Pacific (exh.), 2 p.m.

DIVISION III

Centenary at Hendrix, 3 p.m.

WOMEN

DIVISION I

Arkansas at Kansas, 2 p.m. Hendrix vs. Maryvale (Tenn), at Memphis, 2 p.m.

Sports on 12/03/2017