FAYETTEVILLE, (AP) — If Arkansas isn't careful, it might just turn into a quality 3-point shooting team.
Led by Anthlon Bell and Michael Qualls, the Razorbacks again showed their new-found prowess from behind the arc in an 89-78 win over former Southwest Conference rival SMU on Monday night.
Bell and Qualls hit three 3-pointers each, and Arkansas (3-0) finished 11 of 22 from behind the arc overall.
The 3-pointers topped last season's high of 10 in a game for the Razorbacks, who have now won 17-straight games at home, and they were the most the school has made in three seasons under coach Mike Anderson.
"We made shots tonight," Anderson said. "We made shots, and I thought that stretched their defense. When their defense was stretched, we were able to attack and get some (drives) to the basket."
Alandise Harris led Arkansas with 21 points, including 11 of 11 on free throws, but it was the 3-point frenzy — particularly in the first half — that led the way.
For a team that connected on just 30 percent of its 3-pointers last season, Monday's follow-up was a welcomed performance — and it started with 3-pointers from Bell and Fred Gulley on the Razorbacks' opening two possessions.
"As a team, we put in a lot of work over the summertime shooting," Bell said. "Coach (Anderson) stressed it because we know we can't just rely on the inside game. We've got to have people knocking down shots.
"As a team, we took that upon ourselves to be a better shooting team this year."
Qualls finished with 17 points while Bell added 11 for Arkansas, which hadn't played the Mustangs (2-1) since a non-conference game in Fayetteville in 1995. The two schools were former conference foes until the Razorbacks left the SWC in 1992 to join the Southeastern Conference.
"I just think their quality of play affected us more than anything," SMU coach Larry Brown said. "... I think they were prepared, made shots. When you're playing with a lead at home, the basket gets huge, and we never could put any heat on them until late."