Lee helps lead Bucknell past Arkansas
Dallas, TX (Sports Network) – Charles Lee scored a game-high 24 points and
grabbed five rebounds as Bucknell held on to beat Arkansas in a first-round
NCAA Tournament game in the Oakland Bracket at American Airlines Center.
Lee connected on 4-of-7 three-pointers and 6-of-7 free throws, while Kevin
Bettencourt was the only other double-figure scorer with 18 for the 9th-
seeded Bison (27-4), who advance to the second round of the tournament for
the second time in as many years and will meet Memphis on Sunday.
“We came here for a two-game tournament,” Bettencourt said. “That’s the mind-
set we took. I don’t think it’s too big of an upset.”
Jonathon Modica scored 19 points on 7-of-14 shooting from the floor, while
Ronnie Brewer added 14 points and five assists for the Razorbacks (22-10),
who were done in by poor free throw shooting (15-of-24) and poor execution
down the stretch.
“We’re obviously disapointed,” said Arkansas head coach Stan Heath. “We
thought we’d be able to stay here longer. We certainly didn’t take Bucknell
lightly and we weren’t looking past them at all. They’re a very good
Lee drained a shot from long distance with 3:44 to play to give the Bison a
seven-point lead, 53-46, however Brewer answered by sinking a three and then
hitting a pair of freebies to cut the lead down to two points, 53-51.
With 1:15 left Modica hit a pair of free-throws to tie the game, 55-55.
Bucknell broke the Arkansas press on the ensuing possession and Lee got free
underneath for a layup to put the Bison up two, 57-55.
On the next Arkansas possession, Eric Ferguson missed a three-pointer from the
top of the key and the Bison grabbed the rebound. Lee was sent to the foul
line on the next possession, where he missed the front end of a one-and-one.
Bucknell corralled the rebound however and Bettencourt was sent to the line.
He missed both free-throws and Brewer grabbed the rebound for Arkansas.
Brewer missed a jumper with 20 seconds left on the next possession that would
have tied the game. A scramble ensued after the missed jumper and with 7.9
seconds left, Abe Badmus came away with the loose ball and was sent to the
foul line for Bucknell. He calmly drained both shots to seal the deal.
After conceding the first bucket of the game, the Bison went on an 8-0 run to
establish an early lead. Lee scored six of the eight points during the run as
Bucknell led for all but 29 seconds the rest of the half and enjoyed a 27-23
halftime lead. Lee led the Bison with 12 first half points.
The Bison extended their halftime lead to ten points as Bettencourt hit three
free-throws and then dropped in a shot from long distance to put Bucknell up,
33-23 early in the second half.
The Razorbacks got to within three points, 34-31, as Modica hit a layup with
14:15 remaining. However the Bison maintained the lead as they hit a three-
pointer every time Arkansas got close.
Bucknell’s No.9 seed is the highest seed ever for a Patriot League team…This
is first NCAA Tournament appearance for Arkansas since 2001…Bucknell
connected on a season-high 11 three-pointers, while Arkansas shot just 2-of-12
from beyond the arc…Bucknell won despite being outrebounded 32-29.