The Arkansas basketball team was back in action Thursday afternoon, taking on Barcelona Todo-Estrella in Spain for the second game on its foreign tour. Below is a recap of the game in reverse chronological order, following by those stats you so crave.
Update on Arkansas’ Opponent
The Razorbacks are playing a team called Catalan Elite. Not much is known about this team at the moment.
Eric Musselman has announced the starting lineup and it is completely different from the first game. Nick Smith Jr. came off the bench in the first game because he missed some practice time with an injury, but now he’s starting. The other starters include freshman Jordan Walsh, returner Davonte Davis and transfers Jalen Graham and Makhel Mitchell.
8:20, 1Q – Catalan Elite 2, Arkansas 0
Things started much differently for this game. Nick Smith Jr. had his pocket picked on the first possession, leading to a layup. The second possession also ended with a turnover, as Jordan Walsh stepped out of bounds. All of the lines on the court likely contributed to that, though. The Razorbacks’ third turnover came on their fourth possession.
6:41, 1Q – Catalan Elite 6, Arkansas 2
Catalan Elite actually scored the game’s first four points before Makhi Mitchell scored on a dunk after an offensive board.
Turnovers continue to be an issue for the Razorbacks. The latest came when Anthony Black had his pocket picked, leading to a foul on the other end.
END of 1Q – Catalan Elite 24, Arkansas 20
A couple of 3-pointers, sandwiched around a Devo Davis air ball, extended Catalan Elite’s lead to 12-2 before Ricky Council knocked down a jumper.
Once again, turnovers are an issue for Arkansas. It had an offensive foul and shot clock violation pretty close together. They did turn up the defensive pressure with a press, leading to a fast break layup by Trevon Brazile.
Barry Dunning Jr. knocked down another jumper for Arkansas and later Kamani Johnson got fouled down low and made both free throws.
Devo Davis grabbed a rebound and immediately pushed it down the floor, leading to a layup by Dunning. That cuts the deficit to 1.
At one point, the FloSports feed cut out.
Davis blocked a 3-point attempt and it lead to an easy run out dunk by Jordan Walsh. That pulls the Hogs within 22-20. The Razorbacks were close to getting a stop at the end of the quarter, but they were whistled for a foul and Catalan Elite made both free throws with four seconds left.
Unofficially, the Razorbacks committed seven turnovers in the first quarter after committing just 13 total in the first game.
7:53, 2Q – Arkansas 27, Catalan Elite 27
Council knocked down a 3-pointer to once again cut the deficit to 2, but Catalan Elite immediately answered on the other end with a layup. A nice feed from Davis to Brazile in the paint led to an and-1, but he missed the free throw, so it’s still a 2-point game.
Another bucket by Brazile, on a down court pass by Walsh, has tied the game at 27-27.
5:28, 2Q – Arkansas 34, Catalan Elite 34
Walsh had a decent look from beyond the arc that would have given Arkansas its first lead of the day, but he missed. The Razorbacks got the offensive board, though, and the ball ended up back in his hands and he was fouled trying to posterize someone. He made just 1 of 2 free throws, so it’s still a one-point deficit.
However, Arkansas stole the in bounds pass while pressing and got a layup to give it the first lead of the game.
Nick Smith has been sloppy with the ball today. His latest turnover came on a pass where he was trying to throw an alley-oop and no one jumped for it.
It’s turned into a back-and-forth affair, with the teams exchanging buckets.
3:40, 2Q – Arkansas 37, Catalan Elite 37
Council missed a pair of free throws that would have given Arkansas the lead, but Kamani Johnson got the offensive rebound and kicked it out to Smith for a 3-pointer. That gives the Razorbacks their largest lead of the day, 37-34.
Arkansas had a couple of chances to extend the lead, but it missed a 3 and then Council committed a turnover. It led to a 3 on the other end that tied it back up.
2:51, 2Q – Arkansas 41, Catalan Elite 37
Black did a nice job of dishing the ball to Walsh as he slipped, leading to a dunk that put the Hogs back on top. Then a steal by Smith gave it back to Arkansas. He fired ahead to Black, who threw a perfect alley-oop to Walsh.
End of 2Q – Arkansas 49, Catalan Elite 43
FloSports’ stream cut out for the final two minutes of the half.
The Hogs fielded an interesting lineup for the final portion of 2Q featuring none of their big men: Black, Smith, Davis, Dunning, and Walsh. This versatile and quick lineup provided a bit of a spark to go along with Jordan Walsh’s uptick in energy. He has a few dunks on the day including an impressive alley-oop finish on a lob pass from Anthony Black.
Catalan Elite has provided a different level of competition compared to the Razorbacks’ first game on Tuesday. Their guards are crafty and have shot decently while their big men pose more of a physical challenge on both sides of the ball.
After a sloppy start including (roughly) seven turnovers in the 1Q, Razorback forwards Council, Dunning, Walsh, and Johnson stepped up their intensity and provided timely plays on both sides of the ball to give Arkansas the lead heading into the halftime break.
8:38 3Q – Arkansas 53, Catalan Elite 43
Hogs open with a set play finding Brazile underneath. He missed the layup, but Kamani Johnson found a cutting Walsh after grabbing the offensive rebound. Walsh is fouled on the layup attempt and goes 1/2 at the FT line.
Nick Smith Jr hit an uncontested corner 3 on the following possession to extend the lead to 10.
5:06 3Q – Arkansas 62, Catalan Elite 46
Smith Jr and Trevon Brazile missed-timed a fast break alley-oop leading to a bucket for Catalan Elite on the other end. Council quickly answered by drawing a foul in the paint and knocking down a pair of free throws to keep the lead at 10.
Smith Jr rose up off the dribble for a smooth mid-range jump shot followed by a floater from Black on the following possession to extend the lead to 14.
Catalan Elite responds by drawing a foul on Black and knocking down one out of two from the free throw line, followed quickly by a 3 from Smith Jr to give Arkansas their biggest lead of the day.
1:53 3Q – Arkansas 66, Catalan Elite 56
A pair of Catalan Elite free throws cuts the lead back to 14 before an impressive catch and lay-in finish from Brazile off of a lob pass from Davis brings the lead back to 16.
Dunning nearly missed what would have been a highlight-reel poster dunk leading to a Razorback turnover. The momentum has the Hogs playing a little too fast for their feet on a few fast-break opportunities.
A flurry of points from Catalan Elite including a 3, a no-look behind the back pass to an open layup, and a fast break layup cut the Hogs’ lead to 8. Davis responded with an offensive putback.
End 3Q – Arkansas 70, Catalan Elite 58
Davis drew a foul on a floater attempt and made both free throws, but Catalan Elite answered quickly to keep the lead at 10.
Smith Jr scored a fast-break layup as time expired to give the Hogs a 12-point lead heading into the final quarter.
8:11 4Q – Arkansas 76, Catalan Elite 64
Catalan Elite opened the quarter with a quick 3, followed by a Johnson layup on the other end. Dunning euro-stepped his way to the rim on the next possession.
Another 3 from Catalan Elite keeps the Hogs’ lead at 10.
Johnson earned a trip to the free throw line and knocked down both attempts.
5:19 4Q – Arkansas 86, Catalan Elite 71
Johnson bullied his way to the rim and tipped in his own miss followed quickly by a fast-break layup from Brazile.
Things got chippy between Brazile and a Catalan Elite player, resulting in a technical foul on Brazile. Catalan Elite made the technical free throw.
Brazile responded by pinning a layup attempt on the glass and sending an outlet pass to a streaking Davis for a one-handed flush.
A pair of baskets in the paint from Brazile and Black extends the Razorback lead back to 15.
2:35 4Q – Arkansas 93, Catalan Elite 79
Council finished a tough layup in the paint, but Catalan Elite responded with a 3 on the other end.
Davis hit an off-the-dribble 3, something that could elevate his game to the next level if he knocks them down consistently. Smith Jr finished another tough layup inside and Brazile denied Catalan Elite’s attempt in the paint on the ensuing possession, swatting the attempt against the wall behind the goal.
A deep 3 from Catalan Elite cut the Hogs’ lead back to 14.
END 4Q – Arkansas 99, Catalan Elite 86
Davis finished a sweeping reverse layup sandwiched between a pair of buckets from Catalan Elite, cutting the Hogs’ lead to 12.
Davis then made two consecutive field goals in the paint, one coming off of an offensive rebound and the other coming on a fast-break opportunity.
A single free throw followed by an offensive rebound and put back from Catalan Elite gave the Hogs a 13-point victory.
Arkansas faced a much better test in Game 2 than they faced in Game 1, as was evident by their early game 10-2 deficit. A combination of effort plays and forcing turnovers allowed the Razorbacks to climb back into the game and take a commanding lead.
Jordan Walsh in particular made several momentum-swinging plays with his defense and high-flying dunks. Other notable standouts include Nick Smith Jr, Trevon Brazile, Barry Dunning, and Kamani Johnson.
How to Watch Arkansas Basketball in Europe – Game 2
Date: Thursday, Aug. 11
Tip-off Time: 1:30 p.m. CT
On the Call: Spencer Turkin, Matt Zimmerman
Location: Barcelona, Spain
Opponent: Catalan Elite
FloSports is a subscription streaming service that usually costs $30/month, but click here for instructions on how to get it for $12.50.
Game 1 – Arkansas 107, Valencia Seleccion 59
Arkansas wasted no time getting started, jumping out to a 10-0 lead and scoring 35 points while shooting a scorching 16 of 19 from the floor in the first quarter.
Eric Musselman used each of the 13 scholarship players, but freshmen Anthony Black, Joseph Pinion and Barry Dunning Jr., and transfers Ricky Council IV and Trevon Brazile were in the starting lineup. Heralded freshman Nick Smith Jr. came off the bench because he missed some practice time with a finger injury.
However, the injury didn’t seem to slow down Smith, who led the way with 17 points. Kamani Johnson and Brazile finished with 12 points apiece, with Brazile going a perfect 5 of 5 from the floor and Johnson going 5 of 6. Council (11 points) and Dunning (10 points) were the other Razorbacks in double figures.
Even though it was an exhibition game, Musselman was in midseason form as he received a technical late in the second quarter. “What I said was lost in translation,” Musselman joked on Twitter. “They heard how I said something, not what I said.”
Click here for an unofficial box score, highlights from the game and postgame press conferences with Musselman, Smith and Brazile.
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