Hannahs, Kingsley lead Arkansas over Texas Tech, 75-68 in OT
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (AP) Dusty Hannahs scowled with motivation, sighed out of frustration and in the end smiled with overwhelming satisfaction after putting together one of the best performances of his career against his former school.
The timing couldn't have been any better for the Arkansas guard, who scored 21 of his 25 points in the first half as the Razorbacks (11-10) eventually pulled away in overtime for a 75-68 win over Texas Tech on Saturday.
The game was the fifth overtime contest this season for Arkansas, but it was the first for Hannahs against the school where he spent the first two seasons of his career.
Hannahs insisted all week that his emotions would be the same as during any game, and he continued to say the same after the win.
There was no denying, however, the fever pitch he caused in Bud Walton Arena while helping the Razorbacks climb out of a 16-4 hole in the first half. And there was little doubt afterward that the victory meant more than others - with Hannahs skipping around the court in celebration with the Razorbacks fans.
''He was basically carrying us,'' Arkansas coach Mike Anderson said. ''... You know there's going to be emotion, but emotion can only take you so far. I think, maybe, he wanted to win in a bad way, and he was able to really help us get back in the game.''
As remarkable as Hannahs was in the first half, he cooled off in the second - though the junior's teammates picked up the struggle down the stretch.
Moses Kingsley had all 17 of his points and 11 rebounds in the second half and overtime, and the center scored on the putback with 13.6 remaining in regulation that sent the game into the extra period.
Once in overtime, the Razorbacks hit 4 of 6 shots to pull away in the Big 12-Southeastern Conference Challenge for a sixth straight win against their former Southwest Conference rival.
''I mean, you're playing your old school,'' Hannahs said. ''Any of you all would know if you played your old middle school or something, but it was just another game. I just wanted to win and beat (No. 5) Texas A&M (on Wednesday) and then Tech.''
The Red Raiders (12-8) trailed by as many as 11 points early in the second half, but they rallied with a 22-6 run to take a 56-51 lead after a pair of free throws by Zach Smith.
The sophomore finished with a career-high 19 points, but Devaugntah Williams missed a layup attempt following Kingsley's game-tying putback at the end of regulation as Texas Tech lost for the seventh time in its last eight games.
However, the production wasn't enough to make up for the early surge by Hannahs and closing power of Kingsley.
''We gave (Hannahs) a great opportunity to (play emotionally),'' said Texas Tech coach Tubby Smith, who coached Hannahs for one season before the guard transferred back to his home state. ''I thought he was focused and ready.''
Hannahs hit 7 of his 10 shots in the half, 3 of 4 from deep, and displayed nothing short of a scowl on his way to the bench late in the half while giving out animated high fives to teammates.
The Razorbacks struggled in the second half against the Texas Tech zone defense, but it was Hannahs who hit the final free throws in overtime in the win against his former school.
Texas Tech: Ross, who is from North Little Rock and played in high school at Little Rock Parkview, originally signed with the Razorbacks before spending a year at prep school and signing with the Red Raiders. The junior played 30 minutes off the bench.
Arkansas: After hitting 7 of his first 10 shots in the first half, Hannahs was 0 for 7 from the field in the second. The junior still finished a point off his career high of 26 points, though, and was 8 of 8 on free throws.
Kingsley's double-double was his 11th of the season, coming after he had only one in his first two seasons with the Razorbacks. The junior has scored in double figures in all 21 games this season for Arkansas.
Texas Tech hosts Oklahoma State on Wednesday.
Arkansas is at Florida on Wednesday.