The No. 16 Arkansas women’s basketball team secured its fourth straight conference win against Auburn, 74-69, Thursday night at Auburn Arena.
The Razorbacks and the Tigers remained neck-and-neck for the majority of the first half and Auburn gained the lead by halftime, 30-29. The Tigers propelled their lead throughout the third quarter to increase the Razorbacks’ deficit to five by the end of the third quarter.
The Razorbacks made a huge impact in the fourth quarter to pull off the victory. Sophomore guard Makayla Daniels scored nine of her 11 points in the fourth quarter. She scored two 3-pointers, pushing the Razorbacks ahead of the Tigers for the remainder of the game.
Head coach Mike Neighbors spoke highly of Daniels’ performance in a postgame press conference. Not only was she making shots, but she played with a lot of emotion, which was new to see from the athlete, Neighbors said.
“I thought her energy and her intensity was really big in that fourth quarter,” Neighbors said.
Sophomore forward Erynn Barnum was another key player during the fourth quarter. Coming off the bench, she was able to obtain six defensive rebounds and two steals.
“I was really proud of Erynn coming in there defensively,” Neighbors said. “I thought she made a huge impact in that fourth quarter.”
It was senior night at home for the Tigers, which made Auburn a tough environment for the Razorbacks to play in, Neighbors said. Arkansas was able to come back from a small deficit with the effort of every player on the team — starters and bench.
After having a no-score game last week against LSU, senior guard Amber Ramirez got back on track offensively, scoring 15 points and shooting 5-10 from the 3-point line.
Senior guards Chelsea Dungee, Destiny Slocum and Amber Ramirez shot 5-13 from the field against Auburn. Neighbors said it was uncharacteristic for the athletes to shoot the same field goal numbers.
Dungee made history Thursday night, achieving 2,078 career points, the most in Razorback history. Her 12th point against Auburn propelled her above Betty Fiscus’ collegiate point total of 2,073. Dungee scored 16 points against the Tigers, being the third player Thursday night to score in the double digits.
Neighbors said he hopes that after Thursday night’s win, Arkansas will be in the conversation for being one of the top 16 seeds as the Southeastern Conference Tournament approaches.
Arkansas’ next match-up will be against the Alabama Crimson Tide at 5 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 28 at Bud Walton Arena. It will be the last game of the season before the SEC Tournament and will serve as a senior night. The game will be broadcast on SEC Network.