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Author Topic: McPherson: Hogs will try to end 2-game losing skid Tuesday at No. 3 Tennessee  (Read 435 times)

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Jason Carroll

LITTLE ROCK -- As if last week wasn't painful enough for the Arkansas Razorbacks, who lost back-to-back home games that went to the wire, an upcoming mid-week road game against No. 3 Tennessee does not appear to be a prescription for healing and getting back on track.

The Hogs (10-5, 1-2 SEC) travel to Knoxville, TN, to take on the co-defending SEC champion Volunteers (14-1, 3-0 SEC) in a game scheduled to start shortly after 6 p.m. CT on Tuesday on ESPN2. Arkansas, which last week lost consecutive games at Bud Walton Arena in Fayetteville to drop to 2-4 in its last 6 games there, is looking to avoid a three-game losing skid against a Tennessee team that is undefeated at home (9-0) and riding an overall 10-game winning streak since falling to then-No. 2 Kansas, 87-81 in overtime, at a neutral site on Nov. 23.

The Hogs, who are 2-0 in true road games and 3-1 playing away from BWA so far in 2018-19, are in danger of starting their third consecutive season at 1-3 in SEC play. In '16-17 and '17-18, veteran Arkansas teams bounced back from those slow SEC starts to finish 12-6 and 10-8 in league play, respectively, on their way to earning at-large bids to the '17 and '18 NCAA tournaments.

"Well obviously itís a big week." Arkansas head coach Mike Anderson said on Monday. "We had a disappointing week last week. But itís a big week here. Weíre playing one of the better teams thatís playing right now in the country in this Tennessee team. So itís a tremendous challenge but itís a great opportunity for us to go out and to get better. Weíre going to be playing, probably one of the more experienced teams playing one of the most inexperienced teams. Weíll get a few more questions answered about our basketball team."

Arkansas was 1-1 last season against Tennessee -- winning 95-93 in overtime at BWA in both teams' league opener on Dec. 30, 2017, and losing 84-66 in the SEC tournament semifinals on March 10, 2018. In that SECT game, the Vols -- who tied Auburn for the regular-season SEC title at 13-5 -- jumped all over the Hogs early and led 48-29 at halftime after shooting 76% from the field (19-of-25 field goals), including 87.5% from 3 (7-of-8). That Tennessee team finished 26-9 after losing in the NCAA tournament Round of 32 against upstart Loyola-Chicago, which would advance to the Final Four.

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