You could tell all week Eric Musselman was tired of falling behind teams by double digits.
In one press conference after another, he appeared a little baffled by how it kept happening, but you never got the idea he wasn't going to figure it out.
On Saturday against Gardner-Webb when Arkansas got behind by six with 6:46 left in the first half, enough was apparently enough.
Behind Connor Vanover's 19 points, Jaylin Williams 10 rebounds and Davonte Davis remembering he can shoot the ball, the Razorbacks had a 14-0 run at one point on the way to a big win.
Musselman probably had numerous questions answered in 86-69 win.
The main one, though, was just finally putting an end to getting behind by double digits. They had done through their last several games, dating back to before the NCAA Tournament last year.
Oh, and that poor assist-to-turnover ratio through the two exhibitions and season opener, flipped the script against the Runnin’ Bulldogs with 23 assists and just nine turnovers.
The 23 assists were the second-best total by Arkansas in the Musselman era.
Davonte Davis and Jaylin Williams each tied their career high in helpers, Davis with six and Williams with five. In fact, Williams has dished out five assists in each of the first two games for the Hogs.
JD Notae added 18 points and two steals while Davis had 10 points and Williams added eight rebounds.
The game was tied at 15-15 with eight minutes to play before Gardner Webb scored six straight for a 21-15 lead. Arkansas answered with a 7-0 spurt which turned into a 14-0 run and the Razorbacks never looked back. Davis scored five during the run while Vanover and Notae each scored four.
After leading by 16 (42-26) at halftime, Arkansas opened the second half with a 36-21 to take its largest lead of 31 (78-47).
Gardner-Webb was 10-of-18 from 3-point range in the second half to cut its deficit down to 17 at the final buzzer.
The Runnin’ Bulldogs were led by Julien Soumaoro (20 points) thanks to making 4-of-5 from 3-point range in the second half. Kareem Reid and Lance Terry each scored 16.
Up next, Arkansas will host Northern Iowa on Wednesday. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m. and the game will be broadcast on SEC Network Plus.
• Arkansas’ starting lineup was JD Notae – Davonte Davis – Au’Diese Toney – Jaylin Williams – Conner Vanover.
• Arkansas won the tip.
• Connor Vanover scored the first points of the game with a jumper on the left short corner at 19:27. Arkansas is 27-8 under Musselman when scoring first and Musselman’s collegiate teams are 93-13.
• Chris Lykes was the first sub for Arkansas.
• Arkansas is 2-0 all-time versus Gardner-Webb and improves to 12-0 versus current members of the Big South.
• Arkansas was 13-of-27 from 3-point range. The 13 3’s made is the fourth-most by Arkansas in the Musselman era and the 48.1 percent from deep ranks as the fourth-best by Arkansas in the Musselman era.
• Connor Vanover’s 19 points are his second-best effort as a Razorback and his third-best career scoring output.
Information from Arkansas Communications is included in this story.