Feb. 18, 2011
Vanderbilt Game Notes | Webcast, Live Stats, Twitter | SEC Network Affiliates
Pink Out | Purchase Basketball Tickets
#19/19 Kentucky (19-7, 8-5 SEC) at RV/- Vanderbilt (18-8, 9-4 SEC)
Date: Sunday, Feb. 20, 2011
Time: 1 p.m. CT
Location: Nashville, Tenn.
Venue: Memorial Gymnasium (14,168)
Radio: 560 AM (Charlie Mattos)
TV: SEC Network (Cara Capuano, play-by-play, Abby Waner, analyst)
Series: Vanderbilt leads 27-14
Last Meeting: January 23, 2011 (#19/19 Kentucky 78 - Vanderbilt 68 (Lexington))
Hoping to continue its strong push down the stretch run of the regular season, Vanderbilt will look to avenge one of its four SEC losses on Sunday when the Commodores host No. 19 Kentucky at 1 p.m. CT at Memorial Gymnasium.
Vanderbilt (18-8, 9-4 SEC) has won five of six games since losing 78-68 at Kentucky (19-7, 8-5 SEC) on Jan. 23. Meanwhile Kentucky is 4-3 during that span. The Commodores are in third place in the SEC and own a one game lead on Kentucky with just three games remaining in the regular season.
Sunday is also Vanderbilt's annual Pink Out game, where fans are encouraged to wear pink in support of breast cancer awareness. Vanderbilt will wear pink uniforms for the game and the first 1,000 fans will receive pink carnations, courtesy of Emma's Flowers, along with pink t-shirts. Tickets are $10 for the game.
The game is part of the Women's Basketball Coaches Association Pink Zone initiative, which is being held Feb. 11-20. At halftime of the game, breast cancer survivors will be recognized and invited onto the floor to welcome the Commodores back onto the court. Following the game, Vanderbilt will hold its third and final mini-basketball clinic and autograph session, both of which are free.
Vanderbilt leads the all-time series 27-14 and has won 13 straight meetings at home dating back to a 79-70 loss on Feb. 5, 1986. Vanderbilt is 14-4 all-time at home against Kentucky. Vanderbilt has lost two of the last three meetings with the Wildcats with both losses occuring in Lexington.
Sunday's game will air on the SEC Network with Cara Capuano (play-by-play) and Abby Waner (analyst) on the call. Each of Vanderbilt's final three regular season games will be televised.
Fans can listen to the game in Nashville on 560 AM with the voice of Vanderbilt women's basketball, Charlie Mattos, on the call. Fans may also listen online by subscribing to All-Access on VUCommodores.com. The game will be webcast on ESPN3.com.
In the previous meeting with Kentucky, Vanderbilt saw its 10-point lead disappear thanks to a 30-5 Kentucky run to close the first half. The Commodores never got closer than seven from that point on. Christina Foggie scored 15 points and Jence Rhoads added 14 in the loss, which dropped VU to 4-3 in the league.
Last Time Out
It took almost 26 minutes, but Vanderbilt was finally able to rid itself of a scrappy Mississippi State team by erasing a seven-point deficit with a huge second-half run, which snapped a two-game losing streak in Starkville as the Commodores earned a 74-62 win Thursday at Humphrey Coliseum.
Trailing by six at the time, Vanderbilt (18-8, 9-4 SEC) used a 17-0 run in the second half to take command of the game with an 11-point lead, 55-44, with 8:27 to play. Mississippi State (10-15, 2-11 SEC) would get no closer than seven points from that point on.
The win kept Vanderbilt in the thick of the SEC race for second place in the SEC and trail second-place Georgia by one game with three to play.
Vanderbilt was paced by Tiffany Clarke, who poured in 22 points and collected a career-high 14 rebounds for her third double-double of the season. Jasmine Lister added 16 points, 14 of which came in the second half.
Kentucky is coming off a season in which it went to the elite eight and finished 28-8 overall. This year, the Wildcats have remained near the top of the SEC standings and have been in the national rankings most of the season.
Kentucky started the season 11-1 overall, but are 8-6 since. The Wildcats are coached by Matthew Mitchell, who is in his fourth season in Lexington. In addition to taking Kentucky to the NCAA Tournament last season, Mitchell has guided UK to two WNITs.
Mitchell is from the same hometown (Louisville, Miss.) as Vanderbilt assistant Kim Rosamond.
Kentucky was picked to finish second in the SEC after returning four of five starters, including reigning SEC Player of the Year, Victoria Dunlap. Dunlap prepped at Brentwood Academy just south of Nashville.
Vanderbilt is 27-14 all-time against Kentucky. The Commodores have won 14 of 16 in the series and had won 13 straight in the series before losing 63-53 at Kentucky last season. The Wildcats have now won two of three in the series with both wins coming in Lexington.
Vanderbilt is 14-4 all-time at home against Kentucky. The Commodores have won 13 straight meetings at Memorial Gym with the last loss coming Feb. 5, 1986.
Head Coach Melanie Balcomb is 10-2 all-time against Kentucky.
Guard Christina Foggie returned to the floor against Mississippi State after missing the previous five games due to a concussion. Foggie scored 11 points in her return.
Commodores Close Strong Under Balcomb
Vanderbilt has won five of its last six games since losing at Kentucky. The Commodores are once again finding their groove just as the end of the regular season nears. Under Coach Balcomb, Vanderbilt has closed the regular season about as well as any team in the league. Since Balcomb's first season (2002-03), Vanderbilt is 55-18 (75.3%) all-time in its final nine regular season games.
Even more impressive is Vanderbilt's record in the team's final nine games against teams besides Tennessee. Vanderbilt is 55-8 (87.3%) under Balcomb in the team's final nine games against opponents besides Tennessee.
200 SEC Wins
Vanderbilt's win at Mississippi State on Feb. 17 was its 200th in SEC play. The Commodores join Tennessee, LSU and Georgia as the only teams to reach 200 league wins. Vanderbilt is currently 200-142 in SEC play.
Rhoads Joins Rare Company
Senior Jence Rhoads became the second player in school history to score 1,000 points, have 500 assists and collect 400 rebounds after grabbing seven rebounds at Mississippi State on Feb. 17. Rhonda Blades (92-95) is the only other player to accomplish this feat.
Tied for Best Home Start in School History
Vanderbilt had its first home loss of the season against Tennessee and dropped to 12-1 at home this season.
Vanderbilt was looking to become the first team in school history to start 13-0 at home. The 12-0 start matched Vanderbilt's best home start in school history with the 2001-02 and 1992-93 teams. This is the 34th season of Vanderbilt basketball.
As for consecutive wins at home spanning multiple seasons, Vanderbilt most recently won 13 straight games from the end of the 2005-06 season through the start of the 2006-07 season. This year, the Commodores finished their non-conference slate undefeated (7-0) for the first time since going 9-0 during the 2006-07 season.
Three Straight on the Road
After starting 2-7 on the road, Vanderbilt has won three straight games away from home.
Clarke Heating Up
Since moving into the starting lineup on Jan. 30, Tiffany Clarke has been a force for the Commodores, averaging 12.5 points and 8.5 rebounds during the six-game span. Clarke has posted two double-doubles in those six games.
Not Living by the Three
Vanderbilt has long been known as a team with outstanding three-point shooting. The Commodores are again terrific from beyond the arc, but in the last five games Vanderbilt has not made more than five three-pointers in a game and has made 17 threes during that span.
Lister Regaining Her Stroke from Three
Jasmine Lister began the season on fire from beyond the arc, hitting 49.2% (31-63) of her three-pointers before the team broke for the holidays on Dec. 22. However, in the seven games following Christmas, Lister made just 21.5% of her threes (11-51). Lister found her stroke again against Arkansas on Jan. 20 when she made a career-high 5-of-7 threes. Since the Arkansas game, Lister has made 16-of-36 three-pointers (44.4%).
70 is the Magic Number
Vanderbilt is 17-2 when it holds an opponent to less than 70 points and 1-6 when an opponent scores at least 70 points. The only losses when an opponent scored less than 70 came against Tennessee when the Lady Vols scored 68 and 65. The only win when an opponent scored more than 70 was the double overtime win at Florida. Vanderbilt is also 13-0 when its scores at least 70 points.