LSU drops heartbreaker at Arkansas, 77-76

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Darius Days

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — The LSU men’s basketball team (20-10, 8-9 SEC) falls to No. 14 Arkansas (24-6, 13-4 SEC) in heartbreaking fashion, 77-76, Wednesday night at Bud Walton Arena.

The first half was a track meet with both teams knotted at 35 after 20 minutes. Darius Days and Xavier Pinson led LSU with 10 points each at the break. Jaylin Williams led Arkansas with 13 points and Au’Diese Toney had 10.

The second half was a dogfight for each side. Both teams traded baskets, ending up with six ties and eight lead changes at the conclusion of the game.

LSU went on a 7-0 run in the first 90 seconds, but Arkansas countered with a 6-0 run of their own. After that, no team led by more than four until the 7:14 mark when Mwani Wilkinson hit a corner three to put the Tigers up six. LSU’s biggest lead of the game, seven points, came after a Tari Eason free throw at the 6:31 mark. Arkansas would cut the deficit down to four, a lead LSU held until 1:47 was left.

Eason fouled out of the game with 1:35 remaining, putting Arkansas’s Au’Diese Toney to the line as he knocked both free throws down, then hit a fastbreak layup to tie the match at 74 with 73 seconds left. Xavier Pinson hit a layup with 52 seconds to put the Tigers up two, but Mwani Wilkinson was called for a flagrant one on a hooking call. Kamani Johnson hit one free throw, cutting the LSU lead to 76-75.

The Tigers made a stop, but came up empty on the offensive end, giving Arkansas one more chance to score. LSU fouled J.D. Notae with 8.6 seconds left as Notae would knock home both free throws, giving Arkansas a 77-76 lead. LSU got one more look at the basket, but the shot didn’t fall as the Razorbacks snuck out the 77-76 victory.

Tari Eason led LSU in scoring with 24 points in 18 minutes. Darius Days put up 19 points and snagged six boards. Stanley Umude led Arkansas with 23 points. Jaylin Williams had 19 points and Toney had 18.

The Tigers’ regular-season finale will be a matchup against Alabama at the PMAC on Saturday, March 5 at 11:00 a.m. on CBS. The Senior Tribute will begin at 10:40 a.m. Tickets can be purchased at

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