Christina Foggie and the Commodores tangle with Tennessee on Monday.
Feb. 9, 2014
No. 18/19 Vanderbilt (17-5, 6-3) at No. 8/8 Tennessee (19-4, 8-2)
Date: Monday, Feb. 10
Time: 8 p.m. CT
Location: Knoxville, Tenn.
Radio: 560 AM, 95.9 FM (Charlie Mattos)
Live Stats: View
REVAMPING THE RIVALRY
Though it has been a challenging task, the Commodores are beginning to put some pizzazz back into their rivalry against Tennessee.
Vanderbilt has posted three wins over the Lady Vols in the past six seasons, including a 74-63 victory last month in Nashville.
It was the second time that Vanderbilt seniors Christina Foggie and Jasmine Lister have tasted victory against the Lady Vols. (The Commodores also beat Tennessee during the 2011-12 season when Foggie and Lister were sophomores).
Tennessee, however, still owns a commanding lead in the series, having won 61 of the 70 all-time meetings between the in-state rivals since the teams' inaugural meeting during the 1979-80 season.
For the Vanderbilt players, this past week's routine was a little different than normal.
Having a rare eight-day stretch between games, the No. 18/19 Commodores' schedule included only practices, classes and workouts ... and a little bit of extra rest.
Vanderbilt hasn't played a game since posting a 71-69 win over No. 17/15 Texas A&M on Sunday, Feb. 2.
It is Vanderbilt's longest stretch between games since the final week of non-conference play, when the Commodores didn't play from Dec. 22 to Dec. 29 season.
The Lady Vols come into Monday's game on a five-game winning streak, and have posted a 6-1 record since losing to Vanderbilt on Jan. 12.
Tennessee is 10-2 at home this season, with the losses coming to LSU and Notre Dame.
Meighan Simmons is the Lady Vols' leading scoring (at 14.9 ppg) and she is one of three players averaging double figures. Isabelle Harrison is averaging 13.3 per game and Ariel Massengale is scoring 12. 5 per game.
As a team, Tennessee is averaging 80.3 points while holding opponents to 63.0.
The Commodores are getting very accustomed to playing ranked opponents.
Monday's game against Tennessee marks the seventh time since the beginning of conference play that Vanderbilt has faced a team ranked in both the AP and USA Today poll.
The Commodores have gone 4-2 in the previous six games against ranked foes, with wins over Georgia, Tennessee, LSU and Texas A&M, and two losses to South Carolina.
FOGGIE, LISTER NAMED TO STALEY WATCH LIST
The Senior guards Jasmine Lister and Christina Foggie have each been named to the 2014 Dawn Staley Award watch list by the Phoenix Club of Philadelphia.
The winner will be announced during Final Four weekend in Nashville.
Vanderbilt is one of only two schools -- along with UConn -- to have two representatives on the list. (UConn teammates Breanna Stewart and Bria Hartley are both on the list).
BREAKOUT FOR BATEY
Sophomore Morgan Batey had a game to remember against Texas A&M.
The Atlanta native scored a career-high 17 points, including knocking down the game-winning free throws with 2.2 seconds remaining in the 71-69 victory.
Batey finished 5-of-7 from the floor and 7-of-7 from the foul line while easily surpassing her previous career high of 11 points. She also pulled down a team-high six rebounds.
HARD TO GUARD
Opposing defenses are finding out that the Commodores are difficult to defend -- from outside the arc or inside it.
Entering the weekend, Vanderbilt ranked first in the SEC and fourth in the nation in 3-point percentage at 40.7 percent. Vanderbilt also ranked second in the SEC and ninth in the nation in field-goal percentage (46.8).