Arkansas nips Auburn in O.T.

Courtney Fortson scored eight of his game-high 24 points in overtime to go along with 10 rebounds and seven assists to lead Arkansas to an 82-79 victory over Auburn in Bud Walton Arena on Saturday. Frankie Sullivan and Tay Waller each scored 18 points and Lucas Hargrove 15 to lead the Tigers.

Fortson split a pair of foul shots with 4.2 seconds left to put the Hogs up 82-79, and then Sullivan just missed a game-tying 3-pointer from over halfcourt that would have sent the game into double overtime.

Sullivan's shot bounced off the back of the rim in front of a crowd of 15,036.

"I thought it was good when it left my hand," said Sullivan. *I lost control of the ball, and I could have gotten a better shot than that. It was a tough loss."

Fortson's acrobatic layup with 14.1 seconds remaining in regulation gave Arkansas to a 67-65 lead. Andre Malone then caught Frankie Sullivan's desperation missed 3 from the corner off under the basket to send the game into overtime with 1.6 seconds left. Sullivan tracked down Waller's missed 3-pointer before heaving the ball to the basket before going out of bounds. It was Malone's only points of the game.

"It was a heartbreaking loss for our kids,* said Auburn head coach Jeff Lebo. *I am very proud of my team with the way we played today. We had a 3 ball at the end of the game that went in and out and a block-charge call at the end of the game. If that goes in and we get a call, it may be a different thing. It's a fine line between feeling real good right now and not feeling too good. Fortson was great in overtime. I thought he was terrific. He made big plays when he needed to have big plays.*

Tay Waller's 3-pointer put Auburn up 63-62 with 3:09 left. Waller then gave the Tigers a 65-62 lead with his toes on the 3-point line with only 1:06 left. Marshawn Powell, who finished with 19 points, fouled Brendon Knox out of the game with a layup with 58 seconds to play and then made the foul shot to tie it at 65.

Auburn (11-12, 2-6) was on fire as it built its lead to 36-27 on a Reed long range 3-pointer with seven minutes before the half as the Tigers were shooting 62 percent from the field and made 6-of-12 shots from 3-point range. However, the Tigers would only score again on a Knox putback with 1:35 left before holding a 38-36 halftime lead.

The Tigers drought continued to the second half as Auburn only scored four points in 11 minutes stretched over both halves. However, the Tigers were able to stay in the game with their defense as a Reed 3-pointer from the corner tied it at 47 with 12:39 to play. Waller then drained a trey to put Auburn back in front at 50-49 a minute later and the game was on.

Auburn stretched its lead to 54-49 on a Hargrove 3-pointer from the corner, capping a 7-0 Tiger run.

Johnnie Lett added five points and a career-high 10 rebounds for Auburn while DeWayne Reed added 13 points and Knox six points and six boards. Arkansas (12-11, 5-3) outscored the Tigers 15-12 in overtime and the Razorbacks made 5-of-6 shots from the field in extra time as Auburn was 4-of-8.

For the game, Auburn shot 44.1 percent from the field, 12-of-34 (.353) from 3-point range and 7-of-11 from the foul line. Arkansas shot 47.5 percent from the field, 6-of-17 (.353) from behind the arc and enjoyed a whopping advantage at the foul line.

Auburn returns home to play Georgia on Wednesday at 8 pm Central in Beard-Eaves-Memorial Coliseum. Tickets are $15 each. February 6, 2010 STORY AD BEGINS HERE