NASHVILLE, Tenn. - Desi Sills, Mason Jones and Isaiah Joe combined for 60 points as the Hogs took care of business to defeat Vanderbilt, 86-73, on Wednesday night in the first round of the SEC Tournament at Bridgestone Arena.
The Razorbacks (20-12) will face 6-seed South Carolina in the second round on Thursday (Mar. 12). Tipoff will be at approximately 8:30 (or 25 minutes following the conclusion of the 6 pm game).
Vanderbilt scored the first points of the game, a 3-pointer, but Arkansas scored the next 10 and never looked back.
Arkansas turned a 12-point lead at the break into a 20-point advantage five minutes into the second half. The Hogs also led by 20 with 13:39 left, but Vanderbilt cut its deficit to 11 (58-48) with 8:41 to play. However, Sills answered with a 3-pointer. The Commodores hung around and were only down 10 (73-63) before Isaiah Joe drained a 3-pointer. Arkansas made 10-of-12 at the free throw line inside the final minute and a half to secure the win.
Jones became the first Razorback to have at least 22 points, six rebounds and six assists in an SEC Tournament game. He added three steals as well.
Sills was 6-of-8 from the field (5-of-6 from 3-point range) to record his third career 20-point game. Joe contributed 18 points, making four treys, and pulled down five rebounds. Jimmy Whitt Jr., scored 12 points and had a team-high seven rebounds.
Jalen Harris had five assists, his 21st game as a Razorback with at least five helpers, as Arkansas finished with 17 assists, the team's most since having 19 versus Vandy on Jan 15. Ethan Henderson and Reggie Chaney each had three blocked shots.
Saben Lee led all scorers with 20 points while Dylan Disu finished with a double-double (13 points and 10 rebounds).
FIRST HALF: Arkansas 38 - Vanderbilt 26
- Vandy scored the first points of the game, a 3-pointer, but Arkansas scored the next 10.
- Vandy got to within four (11-7) before Arkansas went on a 7-0 run to lead 18-7 at the eight-minute timeout.
- Arkansas pushed its advantage to 16 (25-9), holding Vandy scoreless for 2:15. Arkansas shot 40.6% from the field while holding Bandy to 24% shooting (6-of-25).
- Arkansas out-rebounded Vandy 21-20 and had five blocked shots - two each by Reggie Chaney and Ethan Henderson.
- Mason Jones led Arkansas with 14 first-half points. Isaiah Joe added eight pints and five rebounds.
SECOND HALF: Arkansas 48 - Vanderbilt 47
- Arkansas opened the second half by turning its 12-point halftime lead into a 17-point advantage, leading 47-30 at the first media timeout.
- Desi followed with a 3-pointer for the Razorbacks' first 20-point lead, 50-30, at 14:54. Overall, Arkansas opened the second half on a 14-6 run.
- Arkansas shot 60% from the field and 50% from 3-point range in the second half.
- Arkansas' starting lineup was Jalen Harris (G) - Jimmy Whitt (G) - Isaiah Joe (G) - Mason Jones (G) - Ethan Henderson (F) for the first time this season.
- Arkansas won the tip for the 16th time in 32 games this season. The Hogs are 12-4 in such games.
- Scotty Pippen Jr., scored the first points of the game, a 3-pointer from the top of the key at 19:10. Mason Jones scored the Razorbacks' first points, two free throws at 17:37.
- The 12 3-pointers by Arkansas is the most by the Razorbacks in an SEC Tournament game.
- Arkansas is now 27-27 all-time in the SEC Tournament, including a 5-1 record versus Vanderbilt.
- Overall, Arkansas has won six straight versus the Commodores and 10 of the last 11.
- Arkansas is 4-0 when four players score in double figures.
- Isaiah Joe was 2-of-2 at the free throw line. He has made 34 consecutive at the stripe.
- Joe has made at least three 3-pointers n 38 of his career 60 games played and has scored in double figures 50 times.
- Desi Sills is shooting 45.5% (31-of-68) from 3-point range over the last 14 games. Sills was 21.3% from deep in his first 18 games.
- Ethan Henderson had seven blocked shots in the last two games. (Henderson has 18 career blocked shots).
- Reggie Chaney has a blocked shot in 34 of his 63 career games and has nine game with at least three rejections.
- Eric Musselman has won at least 20 games in each of his five years as a head coach.
- Arkansas wins 20 games for the 33rd time in 96 years of basketball.