By Chris Talbott/The Associated Press
OXFORD — Mike Washington had 22 points and 11 rebounds and Marshawn Powell added 19 and two key blocks in as Arkansas snapped a 15-game Southeastern Conference road losing streak by upsetting No. 18 Ole Miss 80-73 Sunday night.
The Razorbacks (10-11, 3-3) earned back-to-back wins over Southeastern Conference Western Division leaders, erasing an eight-point deficit to beat the Rebels (16-5, 4-3) just days after overcoming a 12-point deficit against Mississippi State.
Washington had 12 points and eight rebounds in the final 20 minutes and Powell had 12 points and blocked Murphy Holloway twice with the game on the line.
Holloway finished with 19 points and 17 rebounds and Chris Warren had 17 for the Rebels. Rotnei Clarke scored 18 for the Razorbacks, who snapped Ole Miss’ three-game winning streak.
Surprisingly, the Razorbacks were able to snap out of their SEC road woes without much help from Courtney Fortson, who led Arkansas to a 67-62 win over Mississippi State on Thursday with a career-high 35 points.
This time, though, Fortson spent much of the second half on the bench after drawing his fourth foul with nearly 13 minutes left in the game.
Powell and Washington stepped in for Fortson and dominated the shorthanded Rebels frontcourt.
They quickly got Ole Miss forwards DeAundre Cranston and Terrance Henry in foul trouble. With center Reginald Buckner also out with an ankle injury, that left just Holloway and guards to handle defending the paint. Washington and Powell pressed that advantage mercilessly, converting lob passes into layups as Ole Miss’ smaller defenders fronted them.
Powell scored eight points during a 13-6 half-opening run to erase a five-point deficit and give Arkansas a 47-45 lead. Ole Miss pushed back out to a five-point lead, but this time Washington answered by scoring six points in a 12-4 run that made it 63-60 Arkansas with 9:08 left.
Warren and Terrico White hit consecutive 3s to give the Rebels one last lead, but then Washington and Powell scored 10 of the Razorbacks’ next 13 points as Arkansas took a 76-71 lead with 1:06 left. Clarke hit four straight free throws to ice the win.
It was the first loss for Ole Miss in 12 games when it outrebounded its opponent. The Rebels had a 45-32 rebounding advantage, including 23-5 on offense. But the Razorbacks outscored Ole Miss 36-34 in the paint and Clarke took advantage, hitting 4 of 6 3-pointers.
Holloway gave Ole Miss an early advantage with boundless hustle under the basket, especially on the offensive end. Holloway had a double-double in the first 13 minutes and finished the first half with 11 points and 13 rebounds, including five on offense.
He scored seven points during a 15-7 run that made it 22-14. He started with an alley oop dunk from Warren, added an old-fashioned three-point play and his third basket came after he ripped the rebound away from a defender.
But he wasn’t much of a factor in the second half as Washington and Powell showed their muscle in the paint.
Read more in Monday’s NEMS Daily Journal newspaper.