RUSSELLVILLE, Ark. (ATU) —Marshawn Arnold scored 20 points with seven rebounds, Darrick Little and Tyler Friedel added nine points each, and Nick Wayman totaled eight points as the Arkansas Tech Wonder Boys (18-8, 13-5 GAC) basketball team defeated the Southeastern Oklahoma State Savage Storm (8-16, 5-13 GAC), 73-55 in their final home game of the 2013-14 season in Tucker Coliseum on Monday night.
The game started with a back-and-forth battle reaching the third tie of the game (9-9) at the 14:57 mark after two free-throws from Little. The Savage Storm pulled ahead for a 17-11 lead with 11:44 to go in the first half but Tech used a 7-0 run from 9:24 to the 6:54 mark to obtain a 26-19 lead. Southeastern Oklahoma kept it close but trailed the remainder of the half, falling behind 33-29 at halftime.
Tech had 25 of their 33 first half points come from players off the bench. They shot 40.7% (11-27) in the first half compared to Southeastern Oklahoma's 35.3% (12-34).
The Savage Storm took their final lead of the game with 18:23 remaining when John Balwigaire made a layup to make it 36-35. From that point on, the Wonder Boys went on a 7-0 run and never looked back.
The Wonder Boys dominated in the final few minutes of the game as the crowd applauded as the seniors were subbed out of the game for the final time in Tucker Coliseum. The win was Tech's 13th win this season in Tucker Coliseum.
The seniors recognized were Charles Mells, Kendell Pinkney, and Bobby Hatchett. Mells finished with three blocks, one steal, and a rebound. Pinkney had five points, three rebounds, and three assists. Hatchett finished with five points, five assists, four rebounds, and two steals.
"These three will be tough to replace," said Wonder Boys head coach Doug Karleskint about his three seniors. "Bobby had an unbelievable year and made some big plays when we needed them. Kendell has battled through so many injuries and is an extremely tough competitor. Big Chuck (Charles Mells) is just a great human being and a great player. He brightens the locker room every single day."
The Wonder Boys shot an impressive 49.1% (27-55) from the field while holding the Savage Storm to 37.9% (22-58). Tech hit 10-of-24 (41.7%) from beyond the arc and 9-of-14 (64.3%) from the line. Tech used 19 assists to create scoring from nine different players.
Tech will end the regular season on the road against Harding and East Central. The Wonder Boys will play Harding on Thursday, February 27 at 7:30 p.m. before playing East Central on Saturday, March 1 at 4:00 p.m.