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Arkansas holds off Mississippi State 73-69

AP - Sports
Arkansas holds off Mississippi State 73-69
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Mississippi State's Craig Sword (32) drives between Arkansas defenders Alandise Harris (2) and Bobby …

STARKVILLE, Miss. (AP) -- Anthlon Bell scored a career-high 19 points to lead Arkansas to a 73-69 victory over Mississippi State on Saturday, its first win in Starkville in 14 years.

Arkansas (18-9, 7-7 Southeastern Conference) shot 44 percent (28-of-64) from the field and hit eight 3-pointers, seven in the first half. The Razorbacks have now won five of their last six.

Bell was 8-of-15 from the floor and 3-of-8 from 3-point range. Michael Qualls scored 15 points on 6-of-14 shooting and Bobby Portis added 13 points on 5-of-9 shooting for the Razorbacks.

Mississippi State (13-14, 3-11 SEC) also shot 44 percent (26-of-59) from the field, but struggled with turnovers and failed at times to defend the perimeter. The Bulldogs have lost nine games in a row. Colin Borchert led Mississippi State with 21 points and 7 rebounds.

Roquez Johnson added 11 points and Trivante Bloodman and Craig Sword both chipped in 10 points.

Arkansas opened the game 4-of-5 from beyond the arc and led for most of the first half. MSU took a brief 15-14 lead, but the Razorbacks immediately hit another 3-pointer, stole the ball twice and hit two quick layups to open back up a six-point lead. Arkansas led 39-35 at the half.

In the second half, MSU pulled to within two points early, but Arkansas never surrendered the lead. MSU made a late rally and trailed 73-69 with 40 seconds remaining, but missed a 3-pointer on its final possession.

Arkansas lost the rebounding battle 43-36 but forced 16 Mississippi State turnovers, which it converted to 19 points.

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