The Arkansas Razorbacks basketball program is back in the Sweet 16 for the second consecutive year for the first time since the 94’-96 seasons. Head Coach, Eric Mussleman, has this hog’s team and its fanbase believing for a run in this season’s tournament. Tonight’s opponent is the #1 overall seed Gonzaga.
Both Arkansas and Gonzaga come into this game after being tested in their last games. Arkansas comes in after a not so pretty win over New Mexico State 53-48, and Gonzaga won an absolute classic with Memphis 82-78 in the 2nd rounds to get to San Francisco. The game tonight has a very special member in the crowd. Kris Mussleman, Eric’s Mother, made the trip from her home in San Diego to watch her son coach the hogs for the first time. Can this give the hogs the extra motivation tonight?
The game started fast and furious as we thought it would be. The physicality of these two teams was in full force from the opening tip. Arkansas defensively came out with the intensity fans came accustomed to this season. Jd Notae led the team in the first half with 10 points, five rebounds, and an assist. Arkansas forced eight turnovers by the bulldogs and capitalized off them, and would end the first half with a 13-2 run to take a 32-29 lead into the locker room.
Arkansas continued to wreak havoc on the Bulldogs in the second half, causing six more turnovers. The hogs controlled the glass by outrebounding Gonzaga 45-42 in an area that Arkansas had to win to have a chance at the win. Jd Notae, Jaylon Williams, and Trey Wade led the hogs with 21, 15, and 15 points to help the Razorbacks beat the #1 seed in the NCAA Tournament for the first time in school history.
Arkansas will play the winner of Duke and Texas Tech on Saturday.