Feb. 10, 2014
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. - The Vanderbilt women's basketball team won't have much time to reflect on Monday's game.
And it's doubtful the Commodores would want to.
Traveling to Knoxville for a rare Monday night game, No. 16/19 Vanderbilt was handed its worst loss of the season, falling to No. 8/8 Tennessee, 81-53, before a crowd of 11,384.
The Commodores (17-6, 6-4) entered the game with hopes of registering a season sweep of the Lady Vols (20-4, 9-2) after they beat Tennessee 74-63 in Nashville last month. But Vanderbilt fell behind by 11 points at the half and then saw the deficit swell throughout the final 20 minutes.
"We didn't get stops on the defensive end and that made us tight on offense," said Vanderbilt senior guard Jasmine Lister. "We just didn't execute the game plan in the second half. We came out really flat."
Christina Foggie finished with 22 points to lead the Commodores (17-6, 6-4), who will have to regroup quickly. They have two games in the next six days -- hosting Auburn on Thursday and traveling to Miss. State on Sunday -- and will be looking to correct the defensive problems they had against Tennessee on Monday.
Meighan Simmons scored 22 points and Isabelle Harrison added 18 for the Lady Vols (20-4, 9-2). The two players combined to go 17-of-25 from the floor.
"They were very aggressive from the tip," said head coach Melanie Balcomb. "They set the tone inside (early on). They dictated what they wanted to do and stayed with that throughout the game."
Fueled by five early 3-pointers by Foggie, the Commodores faced a workable 32-28 deficit with 3:21 left before halftime.
Then Tennessee took over.
The Lady Vols closed the first half on a 10-3 surge to extend their lead to 42-31 and then opened the second half with an 18-2 run to push the advantage to 60-33.
Vanderbilt missed 12 straight shots to open the second half before Jasmine Lister hit a 3-pointer at 10:35 mark for the Commodores' first field goal of the half.
For the night, Tennessee outscored Vanderbilt in the paint, 36-18, and won the rebounding war, 34-20.
The Lady Vols shot 65 percent from the floor in the first half and 58 percent for the game. The Commodores, normally one of the best shooting teams in the conference, shot just 41 percent from the floor.
For Tennessee, Harrison was 8-of-10 from the floor and Simmons was 9-of-15.
Vanderbilt freshman Marqu'es Webb scored 12 points and was the only Commodore to join Foggie in double figures.
NOTE: With her five three pointers, Foggie now has 254 for her career, and needs just two more to tie the Vanderbilt all-time record set by Meredith Marsh (256).