Feb. 16, 2012
NASHVILLE, Tenn. --The Vanderbilt women's basketball team fought from behind and earned a 75-69 overtime victory over Florida on Thursday, February 16, at Memorial Gym. The Commodores improved to 20-6, 8-5 in SEC play, while the Gators fell to 16-10, 6-7 in league action.
Vanderbilt has now won 20 games in each of the past 13 seasons, 20 of the last 21 seasons and all 10 seasons under Melanie Balcomb.
But it certainly didn't come easy.
In a game that featured nine ties and 10 lead changes, the most important tie came at the end of regulation, when sophomore guard Christina Foggie banked in an off-balance three between two defenders to tie the game at 65. Foggie went on to hit the free throw that put the Commodores up for good, 68-67, with 2:35 left in the extra period.
While Foggie's shot got the Commodores to overtime, it was post play that kept Vanderbilt in a position to have a shot at the end. Junior forward Tiffany Clarke scored 18 points and matched her career high with 17 rebounds, while redshirt sophomore center Stephanie Holzer also had a double-double with 14 points and 12 rebounds. Clarke's 17 rebounds are the most by a player during an SEC league game this year.
Vanderbilt was fighting back the whole game, as Florida led by as many as seven during the first half. However, it was the Commodores who would take a 33-32 lead into the break. That was in spite of the Gator defense holding Foggie, the leading scorer in the SEC to just three points on 1-7 shooting in the opening period.
The second half was more of the same, with Lister doing a majority of the Commodore scoring (10 points in the second half) before Foggie got the three biggest points of the ballgame as time expired to force the extra frame.
Overtime saw Florida strike first, with Azania Stewart connecting for a pair of free throws just over a minute into the period. Kady Schrann then hit a layup for her only score of the game to tie it, then Foggie hit one-of-two on a trip to the line and Vandy would lead for good.
Foggie got another score on the fast break off a big rebound by Holzer before Lister hit one-of-two from the line to make it a two-possession game, 71-67, with 20 seconds remaining. Florida's Deana Allen hit a layup for Florida before Foggie and Clarke each hit two free throws to provide the final margin of 75-69.
Florida was led by 17 points and nine rebounds from Jennifer George, while Allen added 10 points.
Vanderbilt now sits in a four-way tie for fourth place in the SEC. With the coveted first-round bye in the SEC Tournament in the balance for the top-four teams, only two games separate first from seventh place. Kentucky and Tennessee are tied atop the league at 10-3, followed by 9-4 Georgia. Arkansas, South Carolina and LSU join Vanderbilt at 8-5.
Vanderbilt's next contest is at No. 8 Kentucky on Monday, February 20. Tipoff is set for 8:00 p.m. CT and the game will be broadcast to a national audience on ESPN2.